February 2013 Archives

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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This past week served as an opportunity for us to get back on the practice floor without the need to exclusively prepare for our next opponent. We were able to get back to the basics offensively and defensively.

Over the course of a season, especially in the Big Ten Conference, your opponents demand so much of your practice time because of their skill level and style of play. Every coach will tell you that in effort to be prepared for the game ahead, you do not have the ability to practice all the things that you would like. Slippage is going to occur, but we were fortunate this past week to have the bye week to address some of those areas.

On Sunday, Illinois came into Crisler Center on a roll and we knew that they would be ready to play. I credit our team for playing tough the first half and for creating some separation in the second half by converting good defense into good offense.

Trey Burke went over the 1,000-point mark for his career. This is a tremendous accomplishment for Trey. Over the past two seasons, he has played some outstanding basketball for us.

Jordan Morgan played extended minutes on Sunday for the first time since his injury. Jordan's energy and activity were critical in our victory. I give him a ton of credit for his hard work and his determination with his rehab.

Our next opponent is Penn State tomorrow night in State College. Any Big Ten road game deserves the proper preparation and attention.

Penn State played tough here 10 days ago, and it will take a team effort to walk out of State College with a victory.

We look forward to the tomorrow night's opportunity to continue to push forward in the Big Ten Conference.

Go Blue!
-John

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

College basketball seasons have their highs and their lows. Unfortunately on Saturday afternoon in Madison, we found ourselves on the wrong side of some incredible plays by the Badgers. Games like that make college basketball so compelling and so interesting from a fans perspective.

I have coached in a lot of basketball games and losing in any fashion certainly hurts. Games involving buzzer beaters seem to hurt more because of the magnitude of the shots but in reality, all losing is difficult because the margin between winning and losing basketball games is so small.

Every play is important when it comes to winning and losing. Execution is the name of the game, and we must credit Wisconsin for executing well in Madison.

Losing in Madison cannot spillover into our preparation for MSU. Our next opponent deserves our undivided attention, just like Wisconsin required our undivided attention after the win versus Ohio State last week.

Our staff has moved on from this loss. Our team has moved on from this loss also. We watched the game film yesterday and attacked the practice floor with the right attitude.

I am excited for the opportunity that we have in front of us. Michigan State is playing well right now, and I expect this rivalry game to be as intense as it has ever been. I am confident in our team's ability to be ready to play at 9 p.m. tomorrow night in East Lansing.

This is life in the Big Ten Conference. We must continue to stay connected as a program, and we will. Our core values of Integrity, Diligence, Appreciation, Unity, and Passion must continue to sustain all of our efforts.

Go Blue!

-John

Women's Lacrosse Coaches Blog: The Road Less Traveled

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There's a good chance you've already seen this video ...

If not, you may be living under a rock. Ha-ha, just kidding. But seriously, if you haven't seen it already, it is well worth a couple minutes of your time.

Kid President seems to be everywhere. A very good friend of mine sent me his "Pep Talk" a couple weeks ago and since then it has seemingly gone viral. He's now popping up universally -- Twitter feeds, Facebook pages and even cracking the national news circuit. But what exactly is it about Mr. Kid President that has us all so enamored with his inspirational words of wisdom?

I have to admit, I love this kid's pep talk. Something about it connects with me and motivates me. Perhaps it's his innocent optimism or jubilant words of encouragement. It could be his cheerful outlook on life, or his obvious determination to make a difference. But whatever IT is, IT got me thinking, "What am I doing that is leading to AWESOME?!"

Building a program is a lot like taking the road less traveled -- for everyone involved -- from coaches, to players, to administration to support staff. We all chose to head down a path not many have set foot on before -- we chose left when most others went right. And yes, as Kid President so articulately put it, it will be difficult at times and there might be rocks and thorns and glass on our journey, but in the end it is all worth it because it's a road that will lead to AWESOMENESS.

And who doesn't want to be AWESOME?! Maybe that's why everyone is watching Kid President's Pep Talk. Because deep down we all want to be awesome; we don't want to be boring and we want to make a difference.

Team One and Michigan women's lacrosse has a dream and we are going to keep going, keep going, keep going and keep going until we reach that dream. And then when that happens, we'll go get a better dream that leads to even more awesomeness.

Ultimately though, in life, as Kid President said, we are all on the same team and we hope you will join us on our journey!

Go Blue!

Coach Valore

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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The last two outings for us have been high level and extremely intense contests. The Indiana game and the Ohio State game are the type of games all college players dream of playing in.

Saturday night's game in Bloomington was a great battle between two Big Ten opponents. The environment in Assembly Hall was awesome, and we as a program embraced the opportunity to take on the Hoosiers in a game that received a ton of media coverage.

We did not get the result that we wanted in Bloomington vs. the Hoosiers. We give Indiana a ton of credit for the way they played that evening.

Indiana's timely scores and rebounds in the second half made the difference, in my opinion. Their energy and pace of play throughout the game was very impressive.

The game vs. the Buckeyes last night was incredible. The team wore the maize-on-maize jerseys for the occasion, and the environment in Crisler Center was electric from start to finish.

Tim Hardaway Jr. carried our team during a stretch in the second half with some outstanding shooting. Tim is capable of making a string of shots because the way he shoots is so consistent. From day one his freshman year, Tim has consistently shot the ball with great elevation, balance and spin. When you do these things, you always give the ball a chance to go in the basket.

Tim and Trey Burke made two critical blocks in the closing seconds that showed great toughness. When your most talented players also make gritty plays on the basketball floor, it does so much for your team.

I thought Ohio State played an intelligent game and didn't make it easy for us all evening. Their athleticism and size allow them to be so disruptive defensively. This athleticism and size coupled with Aaron Craft's tremendous defensive ability make them very good and very dangerous in the Big Ten.

Our next conference opponent is Wisconsin on Saturday at noon EST. We will tip at 11 a.m. CST, which means our guys will have to be ready for a Big Ten battle at a unique time.

We will need contributions from everyone in order to leave Madison with a victory. Coach Bo Ryan will have his team ready to go, and we will have our team ready to play on Saturday.

Go Blue!

-John

Inside Michigan: Beilein Weekly

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Coming off a tough stretch in our season, our young men have showed both mental and physical toughness. Both the 20-1 start and the current No. 1 ranking are very exciting, but it is important to reiterate that neither is our main focus. Fans should relish the victories, but what really matters is who the No. 1 team is when the NCAA Tournament comes to a close. We need to continue putting in the hours now in effort to be champions when it counts.

Wednesday night was a great win for us as we remain undefeated here at Crisler.

After beating Northwestern earlier in January, our student-athletes carried themselves with the appropriate level of confidence necessary to protect our home court. As a team they executed well, improved on the mistakes they made during our first meeting, and were able to grind out yet another win.

I'm proud of the team. The defensive execution was incredible vs. an extremely well-coached Northwestern team.

Our next priority is our game in Bloomington this Saturday night. Playing in a game like this one is the reason our student-athletes come to Michigan. We are excited about the opportunity to face such a tremendous team in Indiana, but we recognize that it is going to come down to 40 minutes of execution.

The effort will be there Saturday night in Bloomington. We are going to work over the next few days to make sure the execution is in order for the Hoosiers. College GameDay is broadcasting from Assembly Hall, and the 9 p.m. start should make it an exciting Big Ten battle for the nation to see.

Go Blue!

-John

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