Michigan Basketball: Wolverines at Buckeyes — Wrap-up — Bad Day at the Furniture Floor
Michigan made it easy for Ohio State to win the big nationally televised game in Columbus on Sunday. Far too easy is the view here.
Let us go back to the factors in the preview:
- If Michigan made sloppy turnovers with poor passing, Ohio State would take great advantage and create easy scores giving Ohio State an advantage Michigan may not overcome. That happened as Michigan made some soft, blind, and out of control passes that led to turnovers that did not have to happen. Dribbling far outpaced passing for the Wolverines, and when Michigan had to pass due to Ohio State pressure, the results were predictable. In the entire game, even the “comeback” stages, Michigan spent plenty of time not really running an offense, but instead watching as one player dribbled the ball to set up a shot. At least in the second half the Wolverines dribbled inside to pick up some fouls. -That the Value City Furniture floor was a mausoleum that provided a difficult place to shoot outside the arc. Not only did Michigan take plenty of three’s, but also the shots were off balance, on the move, and a couple of feet past the line. The results were again predictable.
- Ohio State plays better defense and had much more pressure on the ball, that was obvious, and provided Ohio State with the biggest advantage of the game. Ohio State is a bigger, more physical team and loved to lay a few hips on Michigan to knock them out of kilter and disrupt any semblance of planned offensive sets Michigan attempted to run.
- Michigan needed to get off to a fast start and just the opposite happen. The defensive pressure difference was the main ingredient to the poor start. There were times Michigan defenders again did not even raise a hand on proven shooters and there is no excuse for that basketball sin.
Ohio State was helped by experience and Michigan’s freshmen, with exceptions, wilted somewhat. Spike and Mitch did not wilt and played with toughness and focus.Ohio State pulled the familiar wilt act at the end of the game, but with the game in reach, Ohio State isolated scorers on smaller Michigan defenders at point blank range on screens Michigan could not cover. Michigan made no such attempts to isolate, except 25 feet from the basket. Simply put, lay-ups beat tough three-point attempts.
Even with everything Michigan did wrong, there was still a chance to pull out an unlikely victory, but Trey Burke’s three went halfway in and then bounced out, sealing the game.
This will only be good if Michigan actually does learn the value of defensive pressure and getting the ball inside now and then. Minnesota may be a better team than Ohio State.
Once again, a Michigan team made Ohio State out to be better than they actually are.
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Written by GBMWolverine Staff
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