John Beilein expressed excitement and concern following the Michigan basketball team’s 62-57 win over Minnesota on Saturday afternoon.
While the coach thought Spike Albrecht and Derrick Walton made crucial plays down the stretch, Beilein was disappointed in his team’s transition game and said the Wolverines will continue to ‘shoot ourselves in the foot’ in the future if they keep falling behind.
Watch Beilein’s postgame press conference in the embedded media player above, or read select quotes below.
Opening statement: “Great basketball game. Minnesota comes in here, and they’ve got a really good team. We just really answered the challenge that they gave us. And it was many challenges.”
On timeout before Doyle alley-oop: “We were drawing up Caris with a lot of things going down the stretch. … Derrick needed to have the ball on the last play. He has four things he can do. He’s hit them over the top for a lay-in, he’s never thrown it in for a lob like that. We’re still growing in that area. Those two had synced on it, and then it was a really big play in the game. Derrick was playing the way we remember him playing.”
On forcing turnovers: “We don’t turn people over a lot. The whole idea was, maybe, if you’re just solid defensively, they’ll give you the ball a few times. We changed some of our help coverage today, just because they have so many shooters. That provided a couple turnovers too. And then we were pretty aggressive on the ball as well.
“I’m a bit concerned right now about our fast break. We have to be better at it. We have to work at it more.”
On Ricky Doyle: “With the exception maybe of Mitch McGary, I haven’t seen a freshman, an 18-year-old, embrace physicality like Ricky does. He just doesn’t back down. You better be physical with Walker without fouling. He did a great job.”
On Derrick Walton playing north-south: “He’s got to turn his shoulders. He came to us as a pass-first guard, and, while we love that, if everyone is playing to pass, we’re not going to find anybody open. We want him to be more aggressive in shooting the ball.”
“That took a lot of courage to do that, and I’m so happy he did it. Make or miss, it was the right play.”
On the alley-oop: “We haven’t done it in a game or a practice yet where it was complete with a dunk. But we practice it a lot, like once a week. But we’ve never done it. That took a lot of courage to do that, and I’m so happy he did it. Make or miss, it was the right play.”
On comeback wins: “We’re going to shoot ourselves in the foot many times this year and have to rebound from it. The adversity is going to make us better.”
On uniforms: “They were pretty nice. The first question our guys asked us is if they could keep them. And I believe now they are allowed to keep them. We’ll get them cleaned up and we’ll get them to them at the end of the year — if they continue to play really well.”
On switching to the 1-3-1 zone: “A little bit out of desperation and foul trouble. They’re really good at driving the ball. They’re probably quicker than us. DeAndrew Matthieu is probably quicker than anybody in the world. And when they got to the bonus, we decided. They are a pretty good passing team, but in that 1-3-1 zone, it can spook people sometimes.
“I can tell you one team it doesn’t spook: Our scout team. They kill us every day. Every day. But you could get a turnover or two. Those two turnovers back-to-back? That was big.”
On Spike Albrecht’s outburst on block call: “Really good officials understand the passions that’s going into this game. … I hadn’t noticed him because I was having my own issues at the time.” [laughs]