|#2 Michigan (16-0, 3-0)||25||37||62|
|Nebraska (9-7, 0-3)||20||27||47|
Following a pair of dominating performances against Northwestern and Iowa, Michigan took to the court Wednesday night against an overmatched Nebraska team with the goal of equaling the best start in program history. The Cornhuskers gave Michigan a game, but a strong second half led Michigan to a 62-47 win to match the 16-0 start of the 1985-86 team.
Scoring was hard to come by in the first half as Michigan displayed a rare cold spell that allowed Nebraska to hang tough. By the time of the first official TV timeout, Michigan held just a 5-2 lead. The teams went back and forth through the rest of the first half with Michigan never getting a chance to pull away by more than six. Every time the Wolverines showed signs of pulling away, Nebraska would hit a shot or two to stay right there. Michigan took a 25-20 lead into the half.
The second half started off with a three-point play by Trey Burke, but Nebraska’s Daryl Talley answered with a three. After two more Burke free throws, Nebraska hit another three, giving the ‘Huskers hope of coming back. But Michigan scored nine of the next 13 points to open up a 39-30 lead. The teams traded baskets for the next six minutes, and with about eight minutes remaining in the game, Glenn Robinson III made back-to-back big plays to give Michigan the lift it needed to finish off the ‘Huskers.
First, he stole the ball around mid-court and threw down a monstrous fast-break dunk. On Michigan’s next possession, Caris LeVert missed a three, but Robinson came from the three-point line, caught the carom in mid-air and flushed it home. It put Michigan ahead 49-42 and sent the crowd into excitement. Michigan made most of its free throws down the stretch to hold on.
Burke led the way with 18 quiet points on 6-of-16 shooting. He made just 1-of-5 three-point attempts. Tim Hardaway Jr. added 15 points and 11 rebounds – all on the defensive end. Robinson scored 14 and Nik Stauskas had 13. Perhaps the strangest line of the night was that of Jordan Morgan who scored no points, but pulled down 11 rebounds in 23 minutes of action. Mitch McGary scored the only two points for the Michigan bench.
Michigan shot just 38.9 percent from the field (the Wolverines were just 32.3 percent in the first half) and made just 3-of-17 three-pointers. Nebraska was worse from the field, shooting just 33.9 percent overall. Michigan out-rebounded Nebraska 47-30. The 47 rebounds were Michigan’s highest of the season and it was the 14th time in 16 games that Michigan has out-rebounded its opponent.
While it wasn’t pretty, it was Michigan’s third straight 15-point victory in Big Ten play. The last time Michigan has done that was during the 1987-88 season.
Michigan was bound for a cold shooting night after such a great start to the season, and especially the way they started Big Ten play. Perhaps it is good that it happened against Nebraska when it didn’t really matter, and will fuel the Wolverines to perform better when they travel to Columbus on Sunday. The game begins at 1:30pm and will be televised by CBS.
|Final Game Stats|
|01||Glenn Robinson III*||5-6||0-0||4-7||3||3||6||0||14||0||1||0||1||39|
|10||Tim Hardaway Jr.*||5-14||0-3||5-7||0||11||11||2||15||1||1||0||0||34|