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Video & Quotes: John Beilein recaps win over Howard

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Michigan head coach John Beilein was pleased with his team’s performance in a season-opening win. He met with the media to discuss what Howard did defensively that gave the Wolverines problems and provided an update on Derrick Walton’s injured ankle.

Michigan head coach John Beilein was pleased with his team’s performance in a season-opening win. He met with the media to discuss what Howard did defensively that gave the Wolverines problems and provided an update on Derrick Walton’s injured ankle.

On Howard’s defense:

“I’ve been coaching a long time and what Howard did defensively—I don’t recall seeing it. It’s an aggressive match-up zone and they’re taking things away and flying around with great quickness. We may not see that type of quickness all year long. We had all kinds of plans—some of them worked, some of them didn’t. It came down to ‘play ball.’ And we played ball when we needed to… Their defense was very confusing to us at the beginning. We had a package we tried to run, they took some of the things away. We don’t practice against that quickness every day and it threw us for a loop…We were one of leaders in country in not seeing zone last year. We only saw 100 possessions of zone last year. That’s something we had to adjust to tonight.”

On Michigan’s defense:

“Up until they made a few shots at the end I thought our defense was really good. We forced 17 turnovers.”

On bench contributions:

“Off the bench, we got 21 [points] and 14 [rebounds] out of DJ [Wilson] and Mark Donnal. That’s what we needed last year. Who was going to come off bench, [the sixth and seventh guys], and give us something? They really did a good job.”

On Jon Teske and Austin Davis:

“I talked to Austin and told him, ‘We can make this decision at any time.’ If something catastrophic happens in a game, we’ll have to make a quick call. Wanted him to know that. He had a full workout today, full weight lifting session. Plan is only to use him if he’s going to see big minutes because the three [other big men, including Teske] are there…Teske, we used the redshirt. Just watch, he’ll see more minutes as well—that’s the plan if he keeps developing.”

On Walton’s offensive aggressiveness:

“Definitely [an example of him hunting shots tonight]. I told him right before the game, ‘Derrick, this is going to be a game you’re going to need to hunt on top.’ He made some big shots; four threes. He’s got to do it. Several [other] times I wanted him to shoot. Has to have that mentality.”

On the rotation:

“The general rule—not just my rule, most coaches—if you get two fouls in first half, there’s got to be compelling reason to put him back in, because you’re going to get third or it’s going to be lay-up, lay-up, lay-up. So sometimes you have to expand [your rotation] because of foul trouble or injury. This was one of [those times].”

On Wagner getting yanked early in 2H:

“Wasn’t about shot. First ball screen, he didn’t pick it up and protect his guard. I’ll rarely take a guy out for missing a shot. We talked about it, he knows better. Why’d he do it? It’s like a QB throws an interception and he has to play safety. His mind is on the interception, not playing safety. His mind was on the missed shot and he’s got to turn around and be a defender.”

On Walton’s ankle:

“He’s going to be in training room for an hour at least to make sure he gets ice. He just misstepped a little; slight tweak. He’ll take care of it now, 2 or 3 treatments tomorrow, stay off it as well.”

On steals:

“There is a great emphasis on getting out and denying passes. Being more aggressive and not just containing. We were in top 10 in country in not fouling last year. If they make the foul shots it’s a far different game. have to adjust to playing more aggressive but play without fouling.”

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