Sept. 20, 2011
Junior guard Josh Bartelstein will give an inside look all season at the 2011-12 version of the Wolverines.
What's up everyone?
Not a bad time to be a fan of the State of Michigan. The Wolverines are now ranked No. 21 in football, the Tigers clinched the Central Division and the Lions are 2-0. I can't say I support all those teams, but I'm happy for all of you that have dealt with losing professional teams for too long. I have been spoiled in Chicago -- six NBA titles and the White Sox winning the World Series in 2005.
The other very important thing about the beginning of the NFL season is the Buffalo Bills are 2-0. I have no ties to Buffalo besides the fact that Coach Beilein is a huge Bills fan. On most Sundays during the year, we have practice during the NFL games and usually don't catch any of the action.
This would all change if the Bills had a solid team because Coach B would want to watch them play and therefore practice would be later in the day. So everyone on our team -- especially Matt (Vogrich) and Evan (Smotrycz), who love their Bears and Patriots -- have become big Bills fans as well. Don't be surprised if you see them walking around campus in a Ryan Fitzpatrick jersey.
More importantly, we had our first full team workout over the weekend and it went really well. This was the first time since the day before the Duke game that the whole team was in the gym for practice and the coaches could watch.
We had about a 40-minute scrimmage with three teams of five and kept rotating teams in and out. After the scrimmage we had a little conditioning test that everyone loves doing so much. Three suicides in 30 seconds each with 30 seconds rest in between each one. Let me know if any of you can do that.
I thought the freshmen looked very good for their first real practice and while they have a lot to learn, it was a great start. The biggest jump you see is always in the sophomores and all of them have improved dramatically.
No matter how much you prepare for the season, there is nothing like college basketball. Just having that year of experience under your belt is so important. Colton (Christian) has improved his jump shot, Evan is a lot stronger and able to create for himself now, (Jon) Horford is a beast down low (even though he doesn't cut his nails and leaves cuts on everyone). Lastly, Timmy (Hardaway Jr.) has really worked on his ball handling and making reads of ball-screens because he will be used as a playmaker more this year.
I'm going to also start a new feature where I give you guys a drill we do and see if you can reach the goal the coaches' set for us.
The first drill is called 50-in-5 because you need to make 50 three's in five minutes. You get one ball and one rebounder and move around the arc trying to make 50 threes. The only rule is you cannot stand in one spot and get a rhythm. You must move around. The high on the team is 74 by Matt Vogrich, which is a ridiculous number. If you get 50 you win!
For a PDC (Player Development Center) update, apparently the plan is for everyone to move in on Oct. 10 with the first practice scheduled for the 14th. WE CANNOT WAIT! While more and more information has been released as to what exactly will be in there, I can't tell you yet because it hasn't been released to the public. All I will say is that there is no way any other school in the country could have a facility like ours. I'm excited for you all to see it.
Lastly, in a fantasy update, I beat Zack (Novak), Jordan (Morgan) beat Stu (Douglass), Max (Bielfeldt) beat Blake (McLimans), Matt beat Jordan (Dumars) and Evan beat Sai (Tummala). I have the most points in the league and Dumars had the least.
Keep sending in your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oh yea, if anyone can get 50-in 5-let me know and maybe we will bring you in for a workout.
I'll write again soon.
Join the season ticket interest list for priority access to 2015-16 Michigan men's basketball tickets.
Sign up for Michigan Insider to be the first to learn about 2014-15 Michigan men's basketball ticket opportunities.