November 2012 Archives

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Our Thanksgiving in New York City went well. We were able to secure a tournament championship by beating two very good teams in Madison Square Garden in the NIT Season Tip-Off.

Both Pittsburgh and Kansas State are great rebounding teams and are extremely well coached. A point of emphasis in both games was team rebounding.

The game vs. Pittsburgh was the first game of the season that we trailed for a significant portion of the game. I thought our guys showed signs of toughness by continuing to stay the course during the game. Pitt did a great job of shortening the game by taking the shot clock down very low on the majority of its possessions in the first half and not allowing us many transition looks.

The game against Kansas State showcased some of our explosiveness on the offensive end. This team is capable of scoring points in a hurry, and we like the fact that we can build leads in games with solid halfcourt defense and quick strikes on offense. Kansas State did a good job of pressuring our ball handlers and taking away some of our passes.

I was thrilled that our team played well in Madison Square Garden. We wanted to make this a memorable trip to New York, and we are pleased that it resulted in a NIT preseason championship.

I would like to congratulate Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. for making the all-tournament team. I would also like to congratulate Tim on winning the Most Outstanding Player award for the tournament. Tim played tremendous basketball in New York, and we love what we are seeing from him.

Now that the NIT Season Tip-Off is over with, our focus is now on helping the Big Ten Conference win the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. We have a ton of pride in our conference affiliation and we desire to represent the Big Ten Conference the right way. We have a lot of respect for our opponent, N.C. State, and look forward to battling them in Crisler Center tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. in front of a packed arena!

Go Blue!

-John

Women's Lacrosse Coaches Blog: Team One Makes History

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Hello from sunny and warm Naples, Florida!

Our staff is currently down in the Sunshine State for our annual IWLCA meetings, and we will cap off the week recruiting at the last tournament of the fall -- the President's Cup. We've spent the past two weekends of November out on the lacrosse fields, and after a pretty chilly start to fall recruiting, the beautiful Florida weather will serve as a great way to recharge our batteries while watching some fantastic lacrosse.

After Florida, I'll be heading back to New Jersey for a couple days to spend time with family and friends for the Thanksgiving holiday. I'm looking forward to enjoying a little down time and really excited to head up to Madison Square Garden the nights before and after Thanksgiving to see the Michigan men's basketball team in action in the NIT Season Tip-Off! There's nothing like college hoops in the Big Apple ... GO BLUE!

This week is a big week for our program as TEAM ONE will ink their way into the history books with the signing of their National Letters of Intent, and we couldn't be more excited! In the next couple of months, we will be celebrating each member of TEAM ONE with a special highlight on our website, and we can't wait to share with you what makes each and every member of TEAM ONE special. Congratulations to all of our U-M pioneers -- we are so proud of you and the best is yet to come!

It's hard to believe that fall will soon be in the rearview mirror and the holiday season is just around the corner, but what a great time of year this is! There sure is a lot to be thankful for, and for me the opportunity to be a part of building this lacrosse program here at Michigan is one of them! I would like to take this time to wish you a very warm, wonderful and joyous Thanksgiving filled with meaningful time spent with family and friends and, of course, delicious food!

GO BLUE!

Coach Valore

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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We are pleased with the 3-0 start to our season. Our guys have responded well to the demands of competition. We have so much room for improvement and it is nice for our staff to have game film now to teach and instruct from.

The IUPUI and Cleveland State games served as good tests for our team. Each team challenged us in unique ways in Crisler Center this week. This will help us as we continue to go throughout the season.

If I had to point to one characteristic of our team that I really like right now, I would say that it is our team's unselfishness. The ball movement and flow have been very solid so far and will only continue to get better as our team gets more comfortable on the court.

The back-to-back game scenario in college basketball is rare. It usually only occurs in the preseason tournaments and conference tournaments at the end of the season.

The quick turnaround time puts a ton of pressure on the staff to put together a concise game plan and on the players to play hard and smart with limited rest time. Our team responded well to this early season scenario. They showed great maturity in their ability to handle their classes, game preparation, treatment/recovery needs, and the games over a two-day period.

Advancing to New York in the Preseason NIT is an accomplishment for our team. We are looking forward to heading to NYC because this will serve as the first opportunity to win a championship with the 2012-13 team. Our preparation over the next week will be driven by championship thoughts and aspirations.

For many of our players this will be first time playing in Madison Square Garden. Playing there is certainly special, and we look forward to the opportunity of taking on Pittsburgh next Wednesday (Nov. 21) at 9:30 p.m.

Go Blue!

-John

Women's Lacrosse Coaches Blog: A Night to Remember

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Last week was pumpkin carving night. One problem, we had no pumpkins. One hour and three stops later we ventured into a Kroger grocery store, I mean pumpkin patch, and chose our blank, round, orange canvases. Not exactly the "pick out your pumpkin" experience we were looking for, but desperate times call for desperate measures. Perhaps next year we won't wait until October 30 to get into the Halloween spirit.

It was a crisp, windy, eerie night to create jack-o'-lanterns. Were they going to be a trick or a treat? The ritualistic evening went something like this...

Pumpkins

The hocus pocus began with each one of us terrorizing the Internet for the perfect ghostly image that would reflect our fury in one way or another. Travis chose Sparky, who is apparently a dog from the Halloween movie Frankenweenie, and Pam decided it was only proper to honor Gracie, a mysterious black stray cat who surreptitiously dwells in our backyard. I was thrilled to use this opportunity to celebrate Michigan PRIDE, so like any crazed Wolverine would do, I carved the block M for all the GO BLUE goons and goblins wondering in the spirited land of the Maize and Blue.

After preparing the dining room table we began operating on the big orange gourds. Hack, hack, saw, saw, hack, saw, hack and saw. It seemed as if all three of us embodied the accuracy of a lumberjack combined with the precision of a brain surgeon. I felt like a crazed artist, working madly for hours to complete my version of the "M"ona Lisa.

The final product was something special, at least to us. After we had the lighting ceremony, I couldn't help but want to scream, "It's alive, it's alive!"

The night before Halloween, otherwise known as mischief night (or Devil's night if you live in Michigan), was a memorable family event. A big thanks to Sparky, Gracie and "M" for making our evening so much fun -- it was spook-tacular!

Thankfully, I coach much better than I carve a pumpkin!

I hope you all experienced a hair-raising Halloween. I am sure it was a BOO-tastic evening.

Coach Ulehla

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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This evening, we will take the floor in the freshly renovated Crisler Center. The arena looks tremendous, and we thank all of those who have worked so diligently to get it ready for the season.

Michigan coaches on Halloween 2012

Our staff and our players are excited about taking the floor for the first time vs. Northern Michigan.

Our student-athletes have been working hard in the weight room, on the court, and, most importantly, in the classroom in preparation for the season. We will bring a ton of passion to the court, and we hope to see the seats of the Crisler Center filled with energized fans at 7 p.m. tonight.

Last night, after we finished our preparation for Northern Michigan, our staff and our student-athletes had a little Halloween Hysteria in the WDPDC. It is always good to mix in a little fun after a few days of focused attention on an opponent.

On a more personal note, on October 26, my daughter Seana and her husband Ryan blessed us with our second grandchild, John Griffin Hendricks. John was rocking a block M skullcap within hours of his birth.

Go Blue!

-John