basketball

Everything Juwan Howard said after Michigan’s win over Jackson State

On the improvement three-point shooting during the game

I would just say guys made shots. They made shots. Those open looks that we missed, they were good shots. Sometimes it just happens that way. I love the fact that our guys stay with it. Did not hold their heads down and had the next mental play. With the next shop mentality, that helps. In the second half, we could’ve easily put our heads down and said, you know what, the shots not going or I’m afraid to shoot the shot that’s open. React to how the defense is playing you. Proud to see that they ran how the defense was playing them, and sure enough, basketball gods. It happens. Starts rolling in.

On the difference between the first and last five minutes of the game

All of them are a sign of growth. The first five minutes, like I touched on, the ball wasn’t going in but they were still playing hard. You see where the lead, either it was a two-point lead by us or it was a two-point lead by Jackson State. I knew coming in that Jackson State was coming to compete because they have a coach who—you can hear the teaching, I could listen to the teaching that’s happening on the sidelines. His team was prepared for this game. The last five minutes, they made some shots and there were a couple of turnovers by us which were uncharacteristic turnovers. We’ll grow from it.

On things to work on with rebounding

Yes, we lost the rebounding battle by six. We have three days to prepare for it because I know we have a game that’s on Tuesday. Not looking too far ahead because we want to enjoy this holiday the best way we can. We’ll get better with it.

On Hunter Dickinson’s status

I’m not sure. I know he left but he came back. It was great to see the big fella healthy enough to join us. The second half, as you saw, he played some big minutes in the second half and was extremely effective, too.

On issues with the offense

Just shots didn’t fall.

On whether pulling all five starters at once is sending a message

We have a deep team. We have a very deep team. We have Tarris Reed Jr., Duggie McDaniel, Joey Baker, Youssef, Jace and you also have Isaiah over there and Will Tschetter. The list keeps growing. Gregg. There are going to be times where we need to allow those five guys some rest and, as you can see, when they got back in, they went on another run.

On how the coaches approached playing the game when Dickinson was in the locker room

We have Tarris Reed Jr. who was able to fill in when Hunter went out. It’s always the next man up mentality.

On shooting three-pointers

You have open looks. When you get open looks, our young men are smart enough to be able to take what the defense gives them. We shot 30 threes, I don’t find anything wrong with that. 40%? I’ll take that any day.

On double-digit blocks

We have guys that are very competitive. They take the one-on-one challenge and they also do a very good job of contesting shots. That’s pretty elite level to be able time—for example, Jett. I think he may have so far nine on-ball blocks. If not nine, at least seven for sure. That’s hard to do without fouling. He says that he’s able to, with his length and also timing, when a guy goes through his release, to jump up and contest without fouling. Sometimes you’ll see guys fouling the shooters and that’s something we do not teach. Kobe is another one. Some blocks on-ball, that’s something a lot of folks don’t talk about. You can see those guys growing as two-way players.

On whether he’s happy with where the team is at

It’s early in the season. I’m sure a lot of teams like us are not playing their best basketball. We will get better and better, game-by-game. I look at every game that we play as high-profile opponents.

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