Michigan's Beilein, Wisconsin's Ryan: Two coaches with one goal

  • Article by: AMELIA RAYNO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 21, 2014 - 2:41 PM

John Beilein and Bo Ryan are at the top of their games but still crave an NCAA title.

hide

Michigan forward Glenn Robinson III blocked a shot by Wofford forward Justin Gordon during the second half of the Wolverines’ 57-40 victory Thursday in Milwaukee.

Photo: Morry Gash • Associated Press,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

– There is nothing under-the-radar about these two teams.

In fact, when Wisconsin and Michigan took the Bradley Center court at separate times Thursday, the accolades already ran deep. Both are No. 2 seeds in this year’s NCAA tournament. Both have long, banner-heavy histories and tradition.

But as both get started in yet another postseason, the two find themselves sharing a certain drought.

The programs each boast a coach that is considered among the nation’s best.

They are also probably the two best active coaches still waiting for their first championship.

John Beilein came to Michigan eight years ago from West Virginia and including this season, Beilein has twice directed Michigan to at least a share of the Big Ten regular-season title. He’s come pretty darn close to cutting down a more meaningful net as well. Last year, the New York native — who was named league Coach of the Year by the media this season — brought his team all the way to the title game before the Wolverines fell to Rick Pitino and Louisville, 82-76.

Bo Ryan has taken Wisconsin to the Big Dance each of the 13 years he’s headed the Badgers, and he’s been league Coach of the Year three of those seasons. The fact that he hasn’t advanced past the Elite Eight any of those years almost defies logic for a coach that has had so much regular-season success.

Still, plenty to keep the arenas packed and the fan bases smiling in both cases. Both schools dominated the incredibly balanced Big Ten this season, and if anything exceeded expectations — a tough task at schools with such perpetually lofty anticipations.

“Just the way he prepares for everything and gets his players ready for games — I don’t see it with other teams,” Frank Kaminsky said of Ryan. “He has us so ready and knows everything about the game. Hopefully we can get one for him this year.”

There is no disputing that Beilein and Ryan have their programs in tip-top shape. But in one of the most high-spending, bottom-line driven industries, nothing matters more than the hardware that comes in April. And there, both have come up empty.

At least so far.

Both teams took care of business in the round of 64 on Thursday against opponents that never seemed like very real threats on paper.

This is the part that’s supposed to be easy.

Wisconsin dispensed American without problem after completely dominating the second half. The Badgers looked vulnerable at the start of its first-round matchup, sitting in a 20-20 tie with the Eagles just over four minutes before halftime, but once the Badgers — who will get hot-streaking Oregon on Saturday, figured out the Eagle’s Princeton offense — it was over. Wisconsin held American to just three field goals in a brutal second half, toppling their 15-seed punching bag, 75-35.

In the West, one of the bracket’s weaker regionals, the Badgers will get plenty of opportunities to make this year The Year.

Michigan is in a different boat.

The Wolverines, who failed to reach 60 for just the third time this season, overcame a sluggish and sometimes sloppy offensive performance to down Wofford, 57-40. But their path gets a lot rockier moving forward in the stacked Midwest.

Next, the Wolverines, get either 7-seed Texas and 10-seed Arizona State (who completed their game after this edition of the Star Tribune went to press), squads with two of the top-30 defenses in the nation. Both would target Michigan’s perimeter-heavy attack, and the Wolverines would likely have to play better than they did on Thursday to advance.

To get to the championship, Michigan would also likely have to go through Wichita State or Louisville, a trendy pick for the April 7th winner, and the crusher of last year’s Wolverine dreams.

“We love to have another opportunity [at a championship] and this is the first step,” Beilein said. “But we got a lot of obstacles to jump through to get there again.”

 

Amelia Rayno • arayno@startribune.com

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Mets - LP: B. Colon 2 FINAL
Washington - WP: T. Roark 4
Baltimore - WP: U. Jimenez 5 FINAL
NY Yankees - LP: B. McCarthy 4
Kansas City - WP: Y. Ventura 7 FINAL
Cleveland - LP: D. Salazar 1
Seattle - LP: F. Hernandez 2 FINAL
Toronto - WP: R. Dickey 10
Chicago WSox - LP: J. Petricka 3 FINAL
Detroit - WP: J. Nathan 4
Philadelphia - LP: C. Hamels 0 FINAL
Miami - WP: H. Alvarez 2
Pittsburgh - WP: G. Cole 3 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: A. Wood 2
Milwaukee - LP: M. Fiers 1 FINAL
Cincinnati - WP: J. Cueto 3
Tampa Bay - WP: A. Cobb 6 FINAL
Boston - LP: C. Buchholz 2
Houston - LP: B. Oberholtzer 1 FINAL
Texas - WP: N. Martinez 2
St. Louis - LP: P. Neshek 3 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: Z. Rosscup 4
Arizona - LP: A. Chafin 3 FINAL
Minnesota - WP: K. Gibson 6
LA Angels 1 Top 5th Inning
Oakland 0
San Francisco 2 Bottom 4th Inning
Los Angeles 3
Colorado 2 Bottom 4th Inning
San Diego 0
NY Giants 9/25/14 7:25 PM
Washington
Buffalo 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Green Bay 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
Tennessee 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis
Carolina 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Detroit 9/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
Tampa Bay 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Miami 9/28/14 12:00 PM
Oakland
Jacksonville 9/28/14 3:05 PM
San Diego
Atlanta 9/28/14 3:25 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 9/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
New Orleans 9/28/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
New England 9/29/14 7:30 PM
Kansas City
Carolina 0 FINAL
Buffalo 2
Pittsburgh 0 FINAL
Columbus 2
Boston 2 FINAL
Montreal 3
Nashville 2 FINAL
Tampa Bay 4
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Toronto 4
Detroit 1 FINAL
Chicago 2
San Jose 2 FINAL
Vancouver 4
Arizona 3 2nd Prd 3:33
Anaheim 0
Vancouver 0 2nd Prd
San Jose 0
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(24) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(11) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Middle Tennessee 9/26/14 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Fresno State 9/26/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
Texas-El Paso 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(25) Kansas State
Tennessee 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(12) Georgia
Vanderbilt 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Kentucky
Wyoming 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(9) Michigan State
Northwestern 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
TCU 9/27/14 11:00 AM
SMU
Iowa 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Tulane 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Rutgers
So Florida 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Colorado State 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Western Mich 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
Maryland 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Indiana
Akron 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/27/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Arkansas 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(6) Texas A&M
Kent State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Virginia
Western Ky 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Minnesota 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Wake Forest 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Louisville
FIU 9/27/14 2:30 PM
UAB
(1) Florida State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
NC State
Miami-Ohio 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Colorado 9/27/14 3:00 PM
California
Louisiana Tech 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(5) Auburn
Texas 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Kansas
Temple 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Connecticut
(16) Stanford 9/27/14 3:15 PM
Washington
TX-San Antonio 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
South Alabama 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Idaho
Cincinnati 9/27/14 5:00 PM
(22) Ohio State
Rice 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Missouri 9/27/14 6:00 PM
(13) So Carolina
Boise State 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Air Force
North Carolina 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Clemson
Central Mich 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
Troy 9/27/14 6:00 PM
ULM
New Mexico St 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(17) LSU
Memphis 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(10) Ole Miss
Duke 9/27/14 6:30 PM
Miami-Florida
Texas State 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Washington St 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Utah
(8) Notre Dame 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Syracuse
(7) Baylor 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Iowa State
UNLV 9/27/14 7:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 9/27/14 8:00 PM
(21) Nebraska
Oregon State 9/27/14 9:30 PM
(18) USC
Nevada 9/27/14 9:30 PM
San Jose St
Montreal 9/26/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 9/26/14 9:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/27/14 5:30 PM
Winnipeg
Brt Columbia 9/27/14 8:30 PM
Calgary

ADVERTISEMENT

Advertisement
Golden Gavel by Star Tribune

Time left for great deals

Bid thru Sept. 29

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which struggling team is in the worst shape?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close