Game 16: Iowa at Michigan Preview

Dylan Burkhardt

: Michigan (12-3) at Iowa (11-5)
Where: Crisler Arena, Ann Arbor, MI
When: Sunday, January 10th 11:30 ET
Preview: Stat Sheet, U-M KenPom Profile, Iowa KenPom Profile
Radio: MGoBlue, WWJ-AM (950), WTKA-AM (1050)

Michigan faces the only team in the Big Ten that shoots a higher percentage of their shots from long range than they do. Iowa shoots 48.5% of their shots from long range and makes 40.2% of them. Compare this to Michigan who shoots 46.6% of their shots from long range and hits them at a 34.4% clip.

In many ways Iowa is just like Michigan in the sense that they are a perimeter oriented team who loves to shoot the ball from long range but doesn’t pull down a lot of offensive rebounds. The difference between these two teams is tempo, Iowa averages 57 possessions per game compared to Michigan’s 65 possessions per game. Michigan needs to push the tempo off of turnovers and long rebounds. Iowa turns the ball over on 20.1% of their possessions compared to Michigan’s 16.1% (3rd in the country).

Big man Cyrus Tate is questionable after injuring his ankle against Minnesota but last year he averaged 18.5 ppg against Michigan. Tate is really the only person with size on the Hawkeyes roster at 6-foot-8 and if he can’t go they will be in a tough situation even against Michigan.

Two freshmen, Anthony Tucker and Matt Gatens, lead the Hawkeyes in scoring. Tucker has been on quite a slide after a suspension for public intoxication and now a battle with mono. Tucker has played only 7 minutes in 2 games since his return from suspension. Gatens is averaging 10.7ppg in 30.9 mpg and leads the Big Ten in 3point percentage at 55.8%.

Gatens isn’t the only guy who can hit the three on Iowa’s roster, Jeff Peterson (41.9 3pt%) and Devan Bawinkel (39.3 3pt%) knock down plenty of long range shots as well. Jake Kelly (9.4 ppg, 32.1% 3pt), Jermain Davis (23.1mpg, 6.1ppg), and former Michigan recruit Aaron Fuller round out the rotation.

The key for Michigan is to prevent Iowa from getting wide open looks from three point range and keep Cyrus Tate off the boards. I would love to see a more impressive defensive effort in the first half because if you leave Iowa open they will make you pay. Iowa is 1-2 in the Big Ten right now and falling to 1-3 with games against Purdue, Wisconsin, Penn State, and MSU on the Horizon. Michigan can’t afford to lose any more home games if they are serious about making the Big Dance this year.

A few other notes: There will be free pancakes for students before the game and the 1973-74 Big Ten Championship team led by Campy Russell will be honored at half time.

Let’s hear your thoughts, comments, and predictions in the comments.

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  • BJ


  • Aaron

    Prediction? Pain…

    Really would like to see us use all our offensive weapons. Like seeing some backdoor cuts.

    Also need to shore up our defense. Gotta be more aggressive.

  • Tom

    Pancakes! x2!

    Tomorrow should be a fun day for Michigan basketball fans. Students get a nice free breakfast before the early 11:30a game and Michigan is coming off a big comeback in in Assembly Hall.

    This is one of those games you’d like to see the Wolverines come out and make a statement in. Iowa is nothing to be scared of, but we have shown to not take those teams seriously. Lets change that.

  • blueblitz

    Why doesn’t Michigan full court press more after made baskets to try and speed the game up?

  • Bluebufoon

    Will Regan went for 37 points and 18 rebounds. We need to see if we can see some video of this kid.

  • Bill

    Hopefully they bring some energy on defense. They have been getting by turning it on when needed but more consistency is what they need. The offense should take care of it self if they find a good balance between taking it to the hole and shooting 3’s.

  • jg

    predictions are stupid so I’ll say Iowa by 20

  • Mith

    This team is so unpredictable, I just don’t know what to expect. I think they should win this game, and probably will, but who knows? I’ll say 71-65 Michigan.

  • Ken in Las Vegas

    Dylan, I don’t really agree with your statement that we can’t lose anymore games at home if we want to make the dance. That’s kind of a high standard don’t you think? We definitely can’t lose THIS game at home, that’s for sure. If Tate is out, they are pretty screwed, but even if he’s in we win by 10. It will be interesting to see if Merritt is starting again now that he’s healthy. I hope they just keep Grady in there.

  • Dylan

    They really shouldn’t be losing home games in the conference season. In that statement I was more referring to this home game though.

  • Avery Queen

    Lets just hope for 40 minutes of good basketball. Most importantly we need to just flat out shut down their offense. Have yet to see it this season (Duke win was largely self-imposed – not to take away from it). Seems like man d would be the way to go as 1-3-1 is pretty weak in the corners (a shooter’s favorite spot) and we’ll match up well in size. Either way our offense is much more effective off the miss and in transition or as the adage goes: the best offense is a good defense. So with defense we get offense and almost a guaranteed win over a lesser opponent. Without defense we rely on offense and keep the tv viewers watching.

  • JimC

    DEFENSE! As you said, that’s what this team needs to step up.

    Blueblitz, I’ve always heard that fast breaks start after missed shots, but I tend to agree with you – with Grady, this team should be able to push more.

    Prediction: about 4 more inches of snow here. Ugh.

  • I am getting a little tired of reading that every game is a must win, NO none of them are must wins!!! Look you can try to play down those huge victories against Duke and UCLA but the bottom line is all UM has to do is finish .500 (9-9) and they are a LOCK for the tournament with those non-conference wins. It does not matter how they get there, so long as they get 9 wins in conference. UM can lose to Iowa and pick up one on the road to make up for it, and this goes for any other game on the schedule. Teams get upset sometimes and teams pull upsets sometimes, they just have to equal out at the end of the season.
    UM does not have to win ALL their home games, this is totally unrealistic and unfair to expect from UM!

  • UM would need to win all of their remaining home games only if they fail to win any more road games.

  • Mith

    I think the sentiment is that they need to win the “easier” games so they don’t have to pull off upsets later. If we were to rank the conference schedule from easiest game to hardest, this one against Iowa would probably be pretty high on the list.

    So, I’d agree they really need this win. But I suppose its not a must win. Like you said, there would be several opportunites to make up for it later. But better to get the win now and not have the pressure later.

    All the games are not must wins. I’d say the next game- Illinois on the road is one that’s I’d expect to lose, and if they do, no problem.

  • Dave

    how many more games are they going to let the team shoot 80% in the first half….60% or whatever……..if they are letting teams like indiana who lost by about 40 today against illinois i would say that michigan is going to be having a lot of problems in the near future…….they just need to play intense way more often than what they do…..people can argue they are young, but you still can play at a high intense level at all times, thats what good/great teams and teams that will make the tourney do

  • BJ

    This is a must win whether you enjoy reading it or not

  • Dave


  • UMDC

    No, this isn’t a “all we need is one win in the B10 tourney to get into the the Big Dance over horrible Minnesota” must win, but it sure would be nice!

    I see a relatively high scoring game, with Michigan topping Iowa 81-75.

  • Graham “Hambone” Brown

    I think everybody is falling into this trap of thinking that 9-9 guarantees a tourney bid. Looking at our schedule, it is very possible for us to go like 2-8 or 3-7 through our last 10 games. Even if we go 9-9 in conference play, a poor finish coupled with our low rpi relative to the teams we are competing against for a spot in the tourney (Illinois, Minnesota, etc.) will not look good to the comittee. That’s why this game, while not a must-win per se, is still extremely important. I think we need to get at least 11 wins in conference (regualar season and big ten tourney) to feel completely safe on selection sunday, although it is still likely we’ll make it with 9 or 10 conference wins. I guess I’m still a little cautious after the 2006 meltdown.

  • BJ, please explain how a loss to Iowa would eliminate all possiblity of making the tournament? Thats just silly. Yes, they should win and yes it would be very helpful but its in no way a must. UM will lose some games in a tough Big Ten and they will pull some upsets too. Just stop being so dramatic, its a long conference season, there are going to be ups and downs. .500 in an improved Big Ten would probably be enough in a typical year, but this is not a typical year for UM with 2 quality top 10 wins.

  • Troy Middleton

    We will beat OSU both times this yr.

    Book it.

  • JimC

    What the heck, I’m going out on a limb and predicting not only tomorrow’s game, but the rest of the schedule…

    IA(W), @IL(L), OSU(W), @PSU(L), NW(W), @OSU(L), @PU(L), PSU(W), @UConn(L), MSU(W!), @NW(W), MN(W), @IA(W), PU(W), @WI(L), @MN(L).

    Sorry Troy, but this team doesn’t look so great on the road yet.

    If I am clairvoyant, we end up 21-10, 11-7 in conf.

  • wooderson

    Does C. J. Lee get more PT after the way he played against Indiana? If so, at the expense of whom?

  • Bluebufoon

    Matt Vogrich leads hi team to another victory. Dylan heard anything lately on Angus Brandt ? Vogrich’s team plays Brandt’s next week
    I think on the 13th.,CST-SPT-lake10.article#

  • Tom

    I agree with Go Blue….we go 9-9 in the Big Ten and win two tourney games, we’ll be at 21 wins and DANCIN’…..

  • Boy this is an early start! Perfect timing for me really, get drunk tonight, wake up around 11, grab some Mexican bakery food and sit down to watch the game in HD on BTN.

    Michigan needs to win this game. On a scale of 1-10 I’d put it at about an 8. 5 is baseline, +1 for home game, +2 for “1/3 of the way to .500 in conference, and +1 for it being Iowa, a team they are better than — on paper.

    Would be nice to see Manny get back to his efficient ways. Would also like to see Simms dominate on the glass against a terribly small Iowa team.

    UM cannot let Iowa dictate a slower tempo, UM must force tough shots and steals with the 1-3-1 then rebound and get the ball up court.

    I see a fairly easy win in the end, 70-58 or something like that.

  • rlc

    While this isn’t a must win game, if UM can’t win at home against Iowa, Penn State and Northwestern I don’t see how they’ll get in the NCAA tournament. The team could play very well and still wind up 2-7 on the road in the Big Ten.

  • BL11

    was beilein staying in indiana to check out the youngest Zeller boy??

  • Adam

    I see Michigan’s defense turning a corner in this one. Maybe even some post touches? Michigan 71-56

  • jmblue

    UMDC – a high-scoring game is doubtful against this team. Iowa loves to work the clock and shorten the game. Their most recent game was a 52-49 beauty.

  • KJay

    I think we win comfortably today, the IU game serves as motivation to come out strong in the first half. Iowa isn’t at full strength either. I’m looking for better execution on the offensive end and playing smarter defense (hands up all the time, shading to the baseline instead of giving away the middle, etc). Given Iowa’s penchant for 3pt shooting, I’d imagine we may play a lot of man or extend the zone a bit. Fortunately Iowa struggles with rebounding as we do.

    On the recruiting front, below is a short recent update on Will Regan.

    He consistently lists Michigan first. Hope he’d commit soon after the season. His rebounding numbers this season have been extremely impressive.

  • Bluebufoon

    Rivals reports that Coach Beilein stayed in Indiana to recruit
    Mitch McGary from Chestertown,In which is Zack Novak’s old school.
    This McGary kid is a 6-9 sophomore.

    KJay great link on Regan. Thanks.

  • ps

    Does anyone have a link for the game today? Live in an area without btn

  • Dylan

    Tate is not dressed. Foot in a walking boot.

  • AG2

    Keep in mind, Iowa has won 3 in a row in Ann Arbor. I hope Manny Harris knows that!

  • Avery Queen

    this is exactly what i was hoping for. hope we can do it for another 30 mins.

  • San Diego Blue

    Great defense… forcing turnovers.. Making 3s, easy layups. What more can you want!

  • Adam

    Amen Avery. Great to see a solid first 20 minutes. I didn’t think Iowa would be this bad but without Tate I guess their post presence is pretty weak. This is gonna be a good chance to get the end of the bench some work late and get rested for Illinois on Wednesday.

  • Dylan

    Michigan dominating Iowa in the first half. Probably some of the best defense they have played all year.

  • Avery Queen

    What’s with peeps stealing my name? Fake Avery Queen sighting!

  • There are just shy of 10 minutes to go and I have to say I have not seen a team hustle and work as hard as this one is since the Steve Fisher was the coach. Wow, they are flying and sacrificing their bodies everywhere. Incredible.

    I was hoping for 9-9 or 10-8. Maybe 12-6 conference is not beyond this team now. MSU, OSU, Purdue better bring their “A” game when we play them.

  • Kenny

    Michigan is pulling away, guess Shepherd and Wright are going to see some PT today.

  • Josh Moore

    Hi to both Avery Queens. I miss you both.

  • UMDC

    Nice win. Very solid effort offensively and defensively.

  • Avery Queen

    I miss you too, Josh Moore, you big 7’5″ teddy bear. We did some special things together.

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