Juwan Howard and Michigan basketball are now 3-2 after struggling in a lot of areas against a now 5-0 Arizona team. The Wildcats set the tone from the beginning and ended up winning going away, 80-62. Here's what stood out in the loss.
Terrance Williams' role
Sophomore Terrance Williams can do a lot. He's got good, not great, size, he's a good athlete, he's scrappy, he can rebound, he can finish at the rim and he can shoot it — a little bit. Unfortunately, he's been in the lineup as a "shooter" too often and it hasn't suited him very well. He only played 17 minutes, but he only scored five points and went 0-for-2 from three-point range. He just seemed to be out of position too often and it rendered him ineffective.
Three-point shooting is officially an issue
Michigan has not shot the ball well from three-point range all season and tonight was no different. The Wolverines went just 1-of-14 from distance and really don't seem to have anyone who can consistently knock it down. Eli Brooks has been the best from the outside, but he's being asked to do a lot of different things on offense, which has taken away from his outside shooting opportunities.
Out of sorts all around
Michigan just looked a little lost on both ends of the floor for much of the night.
The offense looked flat out stagnant at times. The spacing wasn't good, the ball stuck and dribbling and passing wasn't for any real purpose too often. It resulted in a lot of tough shots and a poor percentage from three-point range. The Wolverines also seem to forget that Hunter Dickinson is on the floor too often. The 7-1 All-American should be at the center of the offensive philosophy, especially at this point in the season. For several stretches, there was no effort to get Dickinson touches. That simply can't happen. Michigan also had 15 turnovers.
On defense, there were several instances of late rotations, weak close outs and poor transition defense. Arizona didn't shoot it particularly well from three-point range but their offense came too easy, too often. The Wildcats are a big team and they used it to their advantage whenever they could, which resulted in double-digit scoring efforts for both of their bigs.
There were quite a few other issues but it seems unnecessary to point them all out right now. The team is young, DeVante' Jones is still trying to find his footing and Arizona is pretty damn good. Still, Juwan Howard is not going to like watching the tape from this one.
Over the course of the next three days, Howard and his staff will be going back to the drawing board to find out how to fix the plethora of issues ahead of a tune up game against Tarleton State on Wednesday.