Michigan 68, Rutgers 64
Well that's a new one. pic.twitter.com/sudwY5dEl6
— Due# (@JDue51) February 23, 2017
Let's review the keys to the game:
Win the game. A bubble team playing Rutgers has but one goal.
Mission accomplished, at least.
Whether due to the soporific venue, their fourth game in 11 days, the proximity to Rutgers basketball players, or simple bad luck, Michigan couldn't get their shooting going all evening. Only Zak Irvin managed to hit 50% from the field among the starters, and the Wolverines went only 10-for-31 from beyond the arc. Free throw shooting was an issue down the stretch for the second straight game.
Other than Rutgers also shooting poorly, this game didn't follow the script. Michigan outrebounded the Scarlet Knights, which entered the game as the Big Ten's best offensive rebounding team. Rutgers outscored the Wolverines 15-7 off turnovers. Irvin was Michigan's most reliable scorer. Derrick Walton struggled with his shot.
The final Rutgers possession was sufficiently Rutgers—an airballed three, a missed putback, and a Michigan rebound—for the Wolverines to survive. It's a conference road win, so the ugly nature of this game won't hurt Michigan in the eyes of the tournament committee. The Wolverines will get one last chance at a statement win on Saturday in the home finale against Purdue. Let's hope their shots are a little more homed in at the friendly confines of Crisler.
I was told there would be Muppets for winning rivalry games...
....only if we beat the KenPom spread.
A road win deserves at least B-level talent like Bunsen Honeydew or Scooter.
Football Team scored 78 pts.
Basketball Team scored 68 pts
Well alrighty then.
Haha Rutgers you suck at everything! Oh wait...
For whatever reason, this team can only do one thing right per game, and the rest falls off. Tonight it was rebounding, but we seemed to forget how to shoot 3's and FTs. Oh well, it's a road win.
how is that allowed
It is somewhat surprising we escaped with a win.
Nice to see Zak have a better game.
It's "hones", as in knife.
You're confusing it with "homes in", like a pigeon or a missile or an alum to Rick's.
that sentence irritated my eyes, thanks for explaining why.
Well I think either or would suffice
Can't believe I logged in for this, but Ace had it right the first time. You "home in" on something to bring focus to it (like a homing device), or you can hone something to sharpen it. Getting the shooting "homed in," while clunky, was right all along.
Both are acceptable, homed is "more correct" but does sound clunkier for some reason.
Just win the damn game. That's all I cared about tonight. Sloppy yes. But I've mentioned already that's what a Rutgers will do to you. Their defense is good and they are beyond feisty. They just don't have the offense to truly make a team pay for the "forced" mishaps on its own offensive end. I'll take it. Only a few days off and a huge one.
I almost wish we were home with NW and @ Purdue as that being the only home game left, it isn't looking good taking that one. I'm leaning towards saying 1-2 down the stretch is probably okay after securing tonight's must-win. It won't make us comfortable so, though. Taking next week and weekend's game would all but asure us a spot within the 10 seed line, probably no matter what happens in BTT. Win a game or 2 in that and 8-9 seed (whoopy-do).
From floor and free throw line, we will beat Purdue.
Not doubt Mitch's force was with us....
Would a win at Northwestern not qualify as a "statement"?
Not after Illinois just swept them
it would qualify. Purdue is playing for seeding right now.
Any team capable of getting swept by Illinois can lose the rest of their regular season games (@IU, UM, Purdue) and sweat things out on Selection Sunday.
and the statement would be: we won at Northwestern who is at least a tournament team. We don't have any of those kinds of wins yet.
Rutgers is going to be annoying forward, apparently. They played NW really tough as well on the road, and they've played some good teams really tough (see going to OT against Wisconsin, were within 5 of Minnesota at home with under 2 minutes). This was an ugly game, but I didn't expect Michigan to run away with it. And this was the only game (save maybe Nebraska, and even that doesn't seem disastrous on the road) that Michigan could not afford to lose, and they did enough to win. Plus, if they hit their foul shots at the end, it's a comfortable win.
I think Rutgers actually has a good coach now, so they have a puncher's chance of not being horrible forever. I give them credit for playing really hard tonight. I still wish they weren't in the conference, of course.
Yes I agree. Their coach is a Jim Calhoun disciple.
A win at Northwestern would qualify as a statement, for NCAA tournament purposes. 2 more wins to feel pretty good about getting in, 3 more to absolutely lock it up.
Proving RPI is garbage, volume 123214213: we moved up five spots after that mess, to 49.
in this case, the garbage is evening out, because it was garbage we were in the 50s.
Yep - ANY road win is big in RPI.
....especially when it is against your BIGGEST rival!
why can't the men share their tanning booth time with the women in NJ???
moved UM up two slots. So is Kenpom also garbage?
"...and let us never speak of the shortcut again."
We'll take it, but come on, guys.
Why does it seem like Irvin just tosses up some free throws with a casual, might make it but whatever approach?
isn't what he is doing. He is struggling so badly with his shot that he is attempting to think about it the least amount that he possibly can. What Irvin is in right now is more than a "funk," he has the basketball equivalent of the yips. He is probably legitimately surprised that it is possible for him to struggle as bad as he is right now. He is a naturally gifted scorer whose game is betraying him. Right now, when you see him shoot a free throw, he has such little confidence that he is going to make that he is trying to physically conquer his apprehension with casual motion, false confidence if you will.
Truly, the only way for Irvin to get out of this is to keep shooting. Gradually, his shots are starting to look less like prayers by the game. I think coming back to Crisler for the first time since he broke out a little against Wisconsin will do wonders for him, especially playing against Purdue who he played really well against last year at home.
If we stay within 12 of Purdue, I'll be happy.
Plenty of teams have played them closer than that. PSU just lost a close game to them last night.
Purdue will outrebound us by about 20, and get about 30+ in the paint, that's why.
Still don't see why you'd be happy with a 12-point loss.
Incidentally, we beat them last year in Crisler.
get 30+ from three. The game isn't being played in the 1950s.
And yet last year Michigan outrebounded Purdue despite the Boilers being a significantly better team on the glass.
and they're not that much better than us. It's a pick 'em game. We might even be favored. Soooo, I'll only be happy with a win.
We have Spike providing insider intelligence from the Purdue huddle, so that might help us.
We were favored by 6 on kenpom against Rutgers and Vegas liked us by 8.5. Vegas has consistently liked us better than kenpom this year and we're one point dogs on kenpon. Certainly a chance vegas has us favored.
Vegas has us favored by 1, some books by 1.5.
I'll be happy if we beat Purdue by 12.
Not sure how anybody can say that's categorically true right at the moment. If we lose out the rest of the season and BIG tournament, games like this ain't gonna help.