Michigan 93, Eastern Michigan 54

Submitted by Ace on December 20th, 2012 at 11:31 PM

Bryan Fuller/MGoBlog

Michigan made it apparent in their 39-point thrashing of Eastern Michigan that they were the more talented team. It was more than just talent, though, that made the difference between the two teams separated by a six-mile stretch of Washtenaw Avenue.

Mitch McGary, 2012 Scout four-star center, played with his usual manic energy, tallying his first career double-double (10 pts., 11 reb.) in only 18 minutes of action. His counterpart, Eastern seven-footer Da'Shonte Riley—a 2009 Scout four-star—didn't attempt a field goal and had six rebounds (all defensive) to go with three blocks, four fouls, and two turnovers in 30 minutes.

After a first-half turnover near midcourt, Riley slowly turned and jogged towards Eastern's end, never making it past the block 'M' by the time Michigan tallied an uncontested bucket. In the second half, he halfheartedly swatted at Glenn Robinson III—much like one would shoo a fly without lethal intent—picking up a foul as the Wolverine freshman connected on a layup.

The contrast between Riley and McGary was stark, and McGary's teammates brought the same level of effort. It would be easy for Michigan to coast against EMU, especially after going on a 20-0 run after falling behind 6-2 in the early going. But the foot never came off the gas—Michigan managed a larger margin in the second half than the first despite emptying the bench.

The Wolverines picked apart Eastern's 2-3 zone with ease; Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. notched 8 and 7 assists, respectively, as they both found Nik Stauskas (16 pts., 5-8 3pt.) repeatedly open on the perimeter. Hardaway led the scoring charge with 17 points despite shooting 5-13 from the field, including a highlight-reel dunk on the fast break—he continues to be most effective when Michigan runs.

Robinson had another sneakily efficient night, scoring 13 points on just seven shots, knowing just the right place to be to find open layups against EMU's zone. Fellow freshman Caris LeVert had the best game of his budding collegiate career, netting eight points on 3-5 shooting, including 2-2 from three-point range.

It was an easy night for the Wolverines, which heads into an eight-day layoff at 12-0. They made it easy on themselves, the mark of a well-coached team that knows—regardless of the competition—that there's no excuse for an off night—they've now got plenty of time for those over the holiday break.



December 20th, 2012 at 11:51 PM ^

So I've been wondering this: Burke (especially) and Hardaway racked up 15 assists tonight. Is this because of something they're doing or more because this team is so deep? I've said many times that this team moves the ball better than any Michigan team in recent history. They always seem to find the open man and this team is so deep that anyone can hit the shot. It's hard to say. 25 assists on 35 field goals tonight. The team is doing something right.

Mr. Yost

December 21st, 2012 at 12:07 AM ^

EMU played zone the entire game. That forces you to pass more and dribble less. When you have shooters everywhere and skilled big men...assists are going to be high. Particularly for the two players who handle the ball the most.

With that said, we are a good passing team and despite tonight (going against the zone) we have shown more improvement due to the players on the floor.


December 21st, 2012 at 12:09 AM ^

Yeah. I was using tonight's stats to talk about the whole season. I like winning and I like guys hitting shots, but I think I love the ball movement and unselfishness the most. I think that the stats that Burke and Hardaway are putting up are a testament to the team.


December 21st, 2012 at 8:24 AM ^

The team is shooting over 40% from 3-point range, and a lot of our three-point attempts are coming off penetration, which means a lot of assists right there.  This is turn extends the opposing defenses and makes it easier for Morgan/McGary/a backdoor cutter to get free down low.  After a few years of poor 3-point shooting, we're finally seeing what Beilein can do when he has a truly good shooting team.  It's pretty fun to watch.

San Diego Mick

December 20th, 2012 at 11:54 PM ^

is I really enjoyed a comprehensive team effort and watching this team is such a joy.

Someone commented in the game thread that Trey & Tim were a combined 10-27 and we still won by 39, we are gonna be a tough team to beat for anyone, I doubt we lose more than 5 games this year.

Mr. Yost

December 21st, 2012 at 12:04 AM ^

Basketball players don't really progress THAT much late in their career like football...I think he'd be playing just as well, which is POY/Lottery Level now. His play his senior year vs. this year or next year would depend more on who he's playing WITH vs. drastic improvement in  HIS game.

I do find it interesting that we could theoretically return our entire TEAM that actually plays. It would be interesting to see if they'd do a Joakim Noah and Florida type thing and all come back for one more year.


December 21st, 2012 at 12:12 AM ^

the score is a bit misleading.  There's no doubt we dominated, but Eastern spent the last 8 minutes or so just chucking up shots with no semblance of offense.


December 21st, 2012 at 12:37 AM ^

from the first 32 minutes?  It seemed to me that the Hurons got intoxicated by making two early 3s and were routinely throwing up bad shots most of the game.  (They finished 7 of 26 from behind the arc, whch is.. subpar).


December 21st, 2012 at 12:45 AM ^

the way he has worked so hard getting into better shape & certainly the way he has become a more capable force in the paint.


However, I cannot help but wonder when McGary will replace him in the starting lineup.


December 21st, 2012 at 12:53 AM ^

Each & every opponent gives this Beilein coached crew of talented & resilient players an opportunity to work on certain aspects that will be needed later on in the season. Tonight's object lesson was plain to see as Michigan picked apart Eastern's 2-3 zone defense. Finding leverage in the middle at the free throw line enabling a secondary pass to exploit the opening along the baseline was executed repeatedly by every line up combination from Michigan's bench.


December 21st, 2012 at 1:12 AM ^

I'm so impressed with our big men.  McGary had the biggest night, but Max also played very well. 

Horford was looking solid until his injury and Morgan is even hitting mid range shots.

We are deep and talented in the post.


December 21st, 2012 at 9:15 AM ^

I'm not sure if this says more about me or the team (I suspect the former) but I was mostly annoyed that we allowed the jumper at the end because I was hoping for us to win by 40+

I know that the EMU Hurons are... not great, but I watch Michigan play and I be like dang.


December 21st, 2012 at 9:36 AM ^

As someone who promised, on hands and knees, to name his first born Rumeal if Rumeal would just make those free throws to win the NCAA championship, I have to say that this team is even more fun to watch than those guys.

Much like them and the Fab Five what is incredible is how many different ways they can kill you. There is just no way to totally stop them, and this is only going to get more true as the freshmen actually learn what they're doing. Holy crap they are going to be good.

Blue boy johnson

December 21st, 2012 at 9:56 AM ^

I enjoyed watching the Fab Five even more than the NC team, because of how unselfish they were, and it started with Webber and Rose. Man those guys could pass the ball and their BBall IQ was very high.

The unselfish nature of this team is much like the Fab Five; they play together very well. GRIII is capable of doing much more than he does, but having that kid run the base line is lethal and he knows he will rewarded for his efforts.

Coach B is a Bball genius.

One thing I greatly respect about Coach B; He almost always accentuates the positive. When Coach was interviewed at half time, he could have easily gone into coach speak about the sloppiness of play at the end of  the first half, instead he focused on the great team play of the middle part of the first half.

Blue boy johnson

December 21st, 2012 at 9:41 AM ^

Two of the more significant plays in the game for me:

Jordan Morgan hitting the 13 footer from the wing; You could tell it was significant because the entire bench rose out of their seats when JMo made the shot. It is a shot JMo can make and needs to make; throw McGary and Bielfeldt into this category as well

McGary's 3/4 court, two handed, over the head, outlet to Tim Hardaway for an easy dunk. Holy shit, what a weapon that is.

UofM Die Hard …

December 21st, 2012 at 10:55 AM ^

I was playing beer pong last night with some friends while watching the Poinsetta Bowl and every time I would shoot I would say "Stauskas" and end it with solid form goose neck shot....I dont want to brag but I was en fuego...if you even say his name and shoot anything, it will most likely drop


Anyway, useless story of the day


Love this team


December 21st, 2012 at 11:19 AM ^

Levert is starting to impress, but will like to see what he does once Big Ten play begins. His outside shot will be important when teams are trying to cover Burke, Hardaway, and Robinson. Surely he will get some great looks, right?