Michigan Basketball: Wolverines vs. Jackrabbits — Wrap-up — Michigan Moves on Rabbits Corralled
Michigan started slow but continued to build speed to subdue the well-prepared South Dakota State Jackrabbits 71-56 Thursday night.
Michigan came out and made a conscious effort to get the ball inside, just like many other games this year. The difference was Mitch McGary started off the game and immediately made at least enough impact that South Dakota State had to acknowledge a threat. Then, as in previous games, the fire away option kicked in. The difference this time was that Hardaway Junior started hitting the tough shots.Like every Michigan foes lately, South Dakota knew every move and spot the Michigan offensive players were moving to before the play even evolved. As a result, more wasted dribble-drive time and some missed shots resulted.
At the end of he first half, Michigan could not guard the jackrabbits on a out of bounds play with one second on the shot clock giving up a three pointer at the end of the half.
Michigan steadily built a comfortable lead going into the end game phase of the contest. Strangely, with the lead and a chance to milk the clock, Michigan started firing long threes and the end result was keeping the jackrabbits at least on the fringe of being in the game. Burke had an off night, but the other Wolverines filled the slack nicely.
The defense again saw the same ol, same ol, with South Dakota State having wide open perimeter and even intermediate range shots, up to three Michigan defenders chasing the ball and not recovering, and one particular Michigan defender still walking toward the shot with arms down. Many Michigan defenders did not even leave their feet when the Jackrabbits were shooting.
Michigan did accomplish one defensive goal, stopping high scoring guard Nate Wolters. But on the other hand, the off guard, Brayden Carlson, had a very enjoyable game of 8-12 from the field and a total of 20 points.
Several teams had worse days Thursday. The team that had the best day, VCU, is up next for Michigan. Michigan will have no choice but to play 40 minutes of focused, aggressive, energy-ridden basketball, or the team will go home. Anything sloppy or lazy will be disaster.
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Written by GBMWolverine Staff
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