February 2012 Archives

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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What a tremendous weekend it was in Ann Arbor! The game, the crowd, and the atmosphere surrounding College GameDay made last Saturday a memorable day for our program.

I knew from the minute I arrived at Crisler and saw the number of fans already lined up at 6:45 a.m. that the day was going to be special. The excitement and enthusiasm carried throughout the entire day and made the game against Ohio one of the loudest and most passionate I have ever experienced at Crisler.

Our players felt and played with that same passion to not only beat their rival, but to take another step towards our goal of a Big Ten championship. We had not one but a number of guys make tough shots when we needed them, and as a team we held strong to our defense to stay in the lead for all 40 minutes of the game.

We are thrilled to have beaten such a talented basketball team, but we must keep the win in perspective. Tomorrow we play at Northwestern in the first of three remaining road games on the schedule. We will need to play each of our games leading up to the Big Ten Tournament with the same level of energy and enthusiasm that we had this past weekend.

Go Blue!
- John

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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Another week of difficult Big Ten match-ups is behind us. Nebraska and Illinois were each challenging opponents in different ways. It was great to come away with wins against both teams.

Without any experience playing against Nebraska before, we had to start from scratch in our preparations. Yet, I thought our guys did a tremendous job, especially considering we were on the road. Our defense was really strong throughout the game and played a big role in limiting baskets for Nebraska.

It was also great to see Zack score his 1,000th career point. Not very many young men are able to accomplish that in their collegiate careers, but he has certainly worked hard enough over the past four years to attain it.

In both games I was pleased with the contributions from our bench players. Matt Vogrich got things going at Nebraska with three big three-pointers in a row. He, along with some of our other guys, had been in a bit of a slump, but his confidence seemed to spread and carry over into our game against Illinois on Sunday.

Tim and Evan both found a rhythm in the game and really stepped up to help us get the win. Illinois has some very quick and talented players, but I loved how we had a lot of guys contribute and really played together as a team.

We've got five days ahead of us before we get back on the court. Our guys will use these next couple days to get refreshed and then we'll put all our focus into preparing for Ohio on Saturday.

Go Blue!
- John

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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Indiana and Michigan State proved to be challenging opponents this past week. We were pleased that we protected our home court and earned a victory versus Indiana. We did not play our best game versus the Spartans in East Lansing and we must give credit to the Michigan State team and coaching staff for their great effort.

It is always nice when you get off to a great shooting start. Versus Indiana, we put together a tremendous start and I believe it set the tone for us the rest of the way.

Indiana made runs to get back into the game but our guys responded well to each run. To grab another Big Ten Conference win in front of our home crowd was great for our team.

Michigan State played with a ton of energy and their execution on Sunday matched their intensity. I felt our effort was there on both ends of the court but our execution was not.

In order to win on the road, especially versus a rival, you must play well. We did not execute the details of the game to the level that we needed to in East Lansing.

We will learn from the Indiana victory and we will learn from the Michigan State loss. We are at a point in conference play where every game has Big Ten championship and postseason implications.

We will continue to take things one day at a time. That is the only way we know how to coach our team.

Our next game is versus Nebraska on Wednesday. In order to get a victory in Lincoln, we must have tremendous focus, energy and execution.

Go Blue!
-John

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