at least it's not just us?
|WHAT||Michigan v. Minnesota|
|WHERE||Ann Arbor, MI|
March 2nd, 2010
|THE LINE||Michigan +1*|
|TELEVISION||Big Ten Network|
*Line provided by online sports betting site Sportsbetting.com.
When Last We Met
Michigan pulled off a road upset of the 8.5-point favorite Gophers. It was a tease. The team shot the ball well and forced 15 turnovers. DeShawn Sims led the way despite being benched early in the game. During Sims' stay on the bench, his backup Zack Gibson did some work of his own by nailing all three of his shot attempts. Darius Morris showed serious flashes of why he's going to be a damn good player in the next couple years, and everything was sunshine and lollipops.
The Wolverines even put themselves in a position to play their way onto the NCAA Tournament bubble, and made Minnesota's path to The Big Dance a little rougher. That worked out basically awesome.
Since Last We Met
Winning is overrated, right? The only time Michigan's done it since their upset in the Twin Cities was on the road against Iowa. Since then, it's been three straight losses, two of them coming at home against teams Michigan should have beaten in Penn State and Illinois. (The other was at Ohio State, where they put up a valiant effort in defeat). The Wolverines quickly went from potential NCAA bubble team to a longshot for the NIT. You've probably watched most of it; it hasn't been pretty.
Minnesota, on the other hand, has gone 3-2 since falling to Michigan, including a statement victory against Wisconsin. As shaky as their Tournament bid looked after falling to the Wolverines, wins in their last two games would lock up a tourney bid. The Gophers know they have a ton to play for tonight.
The big question seems to be whether Michigan will be able to respond to the urgency Minnesota will bring to the table. The poor performances over the last few games - including lackadaisical effort at times - can't continue if the Wolverines want to at least be respectable, even if it doesn't turn into a postseason bid.
If you need an explanation of the stats, check out Ken Pomeroy.
|Michigan v. Minnesota: National Ranks|
|Category||Michigan Rank||Minnesota Rank||Advantage|
|Mich eFG% v. Minn Def eFG%||259||58||GGG|
|Mich Def eFG% v. Minn eFG%||230||30||GGG|
|Mich TO% v. Minn Def TO%
|Mich Def TO% v. Minn TO%||47||99||M|
|Mich OReb% v. Minn DReb%
|Mich DReb% v. Minn OReb%||234||173||G|
|Mich FTR v. Minn Opp FTR
|Mich Opp FTR v. Minn FTR
|Mich AdjO v. Minn AdjD||125||36||G|
|Mich AdjD v. Minn AdjO||50||36||G|
Difference of more than 10 places in the national rankings get a 1-letter advantage, more than 100 gets a 2-letter advantage, more than 200 gets a 3-letter advantage, etc. G is for Gophers.
From the previous Minnesota preview:
Michigan has gone from a mediocre-yet-improving team to a flatly bad one over the course of a couple weeks. Minnesota is a pretty good squad, which means they will probably truck the Wolverines.
Michigan has an advantage in but
twothree categories, which would be forcing the Gophers to turn it over (something they did well last year, forcing 30 Minnesota turnovers in two games), and not sending them to the free throw line, along with not turning it over themselves. The flip side of that is that Michigan probably won't shoot a single free throw , and the Gophers actually have an advantage in forcing Michigan turnovers, something we won't see too many times this year.
As you can see, not a whole lot has changed. Of course, the Wolverines managed to pull off the surprise victory last time, as well. Ken Pomeroy and Vegas think this game is much closer than last time (Pomeroy likes the Gophers by 2, and Vegas pegs them as 1-point favorites). I'm still not sure what to think, as this could be the game where this Michigan team surprises - and teases - us all with a complete effort. I think a 5-10 point margin either way is likely, so I'll give the benefit of the doubt to the team with something to play for.