Nothing But ‘Net – Week #11 – 01/09/2012 – Almost Perfect

The (#16) University of Michigan men’s basketball team played two games last week, and they won one and lost one, to bring their record to 13-3 (3-1 in the Big Ten) on the season.  On Thursday (01/05/2012) they lost at (#12) Indiana 73-71, then on Sunday (01/08/2012) they beat (#18) Wisconsin 59-41, in Crisler Arena.  They came very close to winning the game at IU, and keeping their Big Ten record perfect.  So, they were “almost perfect”.

The IU game was exciting, and frustrating.  Michigan never got the lead, but they battled back from a couple double-digit deficits to get within a point or two, or even tie the game up.  In fact, they tied the game at 68-68 with 3:00 left, and got within one point (72-71) with 4 seconds left, but they just couldn’t quite “get over the hump”.  UM just started a little too slowly, and had to play from behind the whole game.  Not so in the Wisconsin game, where UM jumped out to an early 10-2 lead, fell behind 14-13, regained the lead at 16-14, and never looked back.  They led by 6 (25-19) at halftime, pushed the lead up to double digits midway through the 2nd half, and kept it there the rest of the way.  It was a good, convincing win against a quality opponent.

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Big Ten Report – Week #02 (01/09/2012)

Standings

Here are the current Big Ten standings:

 

Team

Big Ten

Overall

Wins

Losses

Percent

Wins

Losses

Percent

Michigan State

3

0

1.000

14

2

0.875

Indiana

3

1

0.750

15

1

0.938

Ohio State

3

1

0.750

15

2

0.882

Illinois

3

1

0.750

14

3

0.824

Michigan

3

1

0.750

13

3

0.813

Purdue

3

1

0.750

13

4

0.765

Iowa

2

2

0.500

10

7

0.588

Northwestern

1

2

0.333

11

4

0.733

Wisconsin

1

3

0.250

12

5

0.706

Penn State

1

3

0.250

9

8

0.529

Minnesota

0

4

0.000

12

5

0.706

Nebraska

0

4

0.000

8

7

0.533

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Nothing But ‘Net – Week #10 – 01/02/2012 – A Promising Start

Happy New Year!

The (#18) University of Michigan men’s basketball team played two games last week, and they won both of them, to improve their record to 12-2 (2-0 in the Big Ten) on the season, including 7 wins in a row.  On Thursday (12/29/2011) they beat Penn State 71-53, then on Sunday (01/01/2012) they beat Minnesota 61-56.  Both games were in Crisler Arena.  This is a very promising start to the Big Ten schedule.

The Penn State win was easy and convincing, but Minnesota put up quite a fight.  PSU really only has one good player (Tim Frazier), and he got his points, but the rest of the team is pretty weak.  After PSU took an early 5-4 lead, UM went on a quick 7-0 run to go ahead 11-5, and they never trailed again.  The lead got as large as 16 points in the 1st half, and 22 points in the 2nd half, before PSU got a little closer (18 points) at the end.  It was an easy win.  Not so in the Minnesota game.  At the first media timeout, Minnesota was up 6-1.  That’s one point in 4+ minutes of “action” for Michigan.  Not good.  Michigan tied the score at 6-6, then again at 11-11, before they finally got their first lead, 13-11, with 9:16 left in the 1st half.  Once again, Michigan never trailed again, although Minnesota did tie the game at 35-35 in the 2nd half, and get within one point (57-56) with 2:08 left in the game.  Michigan made some clutch shots and grabbed some crucial rebounds, and managed to hang on for the win.  It was very exciting.

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Nothing But ‘Net – Week #09 – 12/26/2011 – A Dangerous Cupcake, And First Trimester Grades

The (#20) University of Michigan men’s basketball team played one game last week, and they won it, to improve their record to 10-2 on the season, including 5 wins in a row.  On Thursday (12/22/2011) they beat Bradley 77-66, in Crisler Arena.  Coming in, Bradley looked to be the final “cupcake” in a series of three cupcakes, but they put up quite a fight.

The final margin of victory looks pretty comfortable, but for first 30 minutes it was a seesaw battle.  Michigan opened up a few small leads in the first half (25-19 with 8:32 to go, 31-26 with 3:45 to go), but Bradley kept coming back, and tied the game (33-33) at halftime, on a long 3-pointer at the buzzer.  The crowd and the Michigan team seemed deflated, and things looked dicey for the second half.  With 18:05 to go in the game, Bradley was ahead (38-36), but that was their last lead.  The game was tied 4 more times, and Michigan never led by more than 3 points until their big run, but once UM pushed the lead past 3 (54-49, with 11:02 to go), it was over.  The Wolverines went from a 52-49 lead with 12:00 left to 71-56 with 6:21 left, a 19-7 run in just over five and a half minutes.  It was a very exciting run, with a couple steals, a couple dunks, and a couple 3-pointers mixed in.  Bradley had been playing with good composure, answering every Michigan basket with one of their own, but once the Michigan run started, they panicked, which cost them the game.

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