Michigan 70, Minnesota 63

Dylan Burkhardt


Bubble dreams stay alive. Michigan’s RPI sits at 54 after the win.

This site is supported by donations

Like what you see? Click the button below to donate and access exclusive content.

  • tin mad dog

    That beats the hell out of Wednesday! Gutsy effort by the boys in Blue!

    Time to get ready to beat spartie again!

    GO BLUE!

  • Mith

    I gotta believe Minnesota is toast at this point.

  • TRUBLU78

    Got some calls out way for once this season……Gophers are bad sports, throwin trash on court at the end! WE WANT STATE!!!!!!!!! Beat Sparty and I think were a lock.

    • Eric

      Definitely not a lock, but boy will it help and feel good!

    • Beast1530

      Michigan is not a lock to get into NCAA tourney even if they beat MSU. May need to win 2 BTT or win it all. 2 BTT is probably sweating it a bit IMO.

      • TRUBLU78

        yeah prolly not a a lock i was high on VICTORY! lol I feel we can hang with anybody in BTT……..2 wins is totally withen reach. When we shoot well we can play with anyone nationally……just need to clean up our D at times…win felt good but there was times when it was getting away from us in the last few minutes of first half. How about Zacks steal at the end…..talk about balls? Novack plays harder than anyone in the nation imo……..HAIL

      • Brad

        2 BTT wins, if one of them is over Purdue, Wisky, or OSU should be a lock or it’s a travesty. If a team like Va Tech gets in over a Mich team with that resume, well, I’ll just stick to the thought that no person is that dumb…

        • Beast1530

          Michigan has no quality wins. Minny is likely to drop out of RPI top 50 and MSU is likely to fall to the 40s if they lose to both Purdue and Michigan. Michigan’s best win would be Harvard which they’re ranked #43 in the RPI and Harvard may not make the NCAA tourney. Michigan’s resume is solid yet shaky at the same time. They really lack marquee win in their resume. One may not be enough for Michigan to get in.

          • Wes D.

            Is Clemson a quality win since we beat them earlier in the season? (ACC/B10 Challenge)

          • Dylan Burkhardt

            RPI is 70, which hurts.

          • Dave

            Any Big Ten road win is a “quality” win and Harvard and Clemson are “quality” wins. An overtime loss to Kansas and a “hail mary” loss to Wisconsin should be positives as well if there is any logic in the selection process. All wins and losses are not equal.

            I do think Michigan needs a win against MSU and probably one win in the BTT to secure a spot – if they don’t get a spot with that resume, it’s a crime.

          • Dylan Burkhardt

            Maybe, and I agree they are good wins, but the committee uses specific criteria. One of the main criteria is how you play against RPI top 25,50,100, etc teams.

          • Brick


            Last 10, road wins and bad losses are other criteria. At Indiana is our worst road loss, we would be 7-3 in our last 10 and we would have 5 road wins. If we beat MSU and Illinois we will be in. The Big 10 is getting at least 5 in the tourney and probably 6. At this point we are competing with MSU, PSU and Illinois for a spot. If we beat two of the three twice and knock the other out of the Big 10 tournament, I will be thinking of what seed as opposed to if we are in. I think some of you are overly worried. All of the worrying is for nothing if we lost to State though so I’m not going to lose any sleep over tournament talk with that big question mark next weekend.

          • Dylan Burkhardt

            Yeah, there are other criteria and Michigan measures well in many of them. But right now top 50 wins is a glaring weakness.

          • Beast1530

            Dave, they’ll look at road record but to break down records against RPI top 25/50/100.

            Michigan are:

            0-6 against RPI Top 25
            3-7 against RPI Top 50(2-7 once Minny falls out top 50 after tonight’s loss)
            8-8 against RPI Top 100

            Michigan’s record against RPI top 25 and 50 may be what prevent Michigan from going dancing especially RPI Top 25 which includes zero win.

            Even if Michigan beat MSU which would bring their record of 4-7 and 9-8 against RPI Top 50/100 respectively. Still not enough for Michigan to punch it in for the big dance. 2 BTT wins may be enough but you have to sweat it out. The easiest solution is to win the BTT and they’re in automatically.

  • Jensencoach

    If we can’t make the tourney, atleast we can crush someone else’s dreams :)

    • JimC


  • Tom_McC

    Gonna take issue with the Post title…this wasn’t a team surviving(although I do get what your saying)…but I thought was all about a team stepping up and showing incredible nut sack. I know “Nut Sack” probably isn’t an appropriate heading…but that is what this game was. This team is as gutty as any team I have ever rooted for and I just love how resilient they are.

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      Was more referring to the nature of Michigan’s bubbe hopes. But I just took it off anyhow.

    • Other Matt

      A thousand times this. I told my wife as we left the bar, “this team has huge, giant, brass effing balls.” This team is moving up my list of all time favorite sports teams at a rapid pace.

      • Nate the Newt

        Ditto. I can’t remember the last UM Bball team I liked more.

  • mike

    Dude if we would of just beat those pesky badgers on Wednesday we’d be in the tourney most likely. Were comin for you sparty.

    • Mith

      Imagine if Smotz’s shot against Illinois went in and the Wisconsin one didn’t. Dang, that close to 10-7 and celebrating what would be a lock.

      Even so, I think we need to take care of MSU, hope Minnesota gets back into the Top 50 and then probably win our B10 tourney opener. We can do it!

      • tin mad dog

        Don’t write that. My head will explode if I think about that. :-)

        I think we’ll all feel better if we remember the shot Stu made against spartie, TH Jr. taking over against Penn State and the 3 pointer and steal that Zack had today,

      • Bigfoot

        If’s and but’s were candy and nuts..JMo could’ve very easily missed a FT against Iowa. Just appreciate the victory is my advice

  • grandchamp


  • um basketball fan

    So proud of this team.

  • mat

    Huge game next weekend. Beat MSU and I think we’re probably in.

    If MSU is defeated, and the rest of the remaining games go as expected, 4th place in the conference will be a 4-way tie with MSU, Illinois and PSU. Michigan would be the hottest team of that group going into the B10 Tourney.

    The tourney would be the deciding factor, but assuming we win the 1st game I think we’ll have an excellent shot of being one of the Big10 bubble teams that will get in.

  • J.D.

    Man Darius Morris is a special player, the way he drew that foul with less than a minute left, hitting those pull up jumpers, finishing with the left. He made a liar out of me and I’ll eat crow. That’s the kinda player I consider star quality. The Butterfly and Tim .H.J. I don’t know what to say, besides a toast to JB.

    Stu Douglas is losing his composure and I think it’s because he has been really dealt some bad luck. The 5 second violation I was yelling at my T.V. But when we had to call a timeout because Stu didn’t see Morris’s play call, I think Morris handled it the wrong way by yelling at him “Stu! Look at me!” I’m going to revert back to the greatest collegiate basketball coach of all time’s philosophy, “Never criticize a teammate.” (That’s John Wooden)

    It felt so good to punch another teams ticket, after the Illinois game and the Wisconsin catastrophe. That’s how a champion closes out a game, after having a tough loss. Some people have said they are pleased with an NIT bid considering our youth and the way we started the conference, but you don’t play for a NIT bid you want to win a national title (that’s not a prediction) and the only way to do it is to make the dance.

    Keep winning! Go Blue

  • Bill

    As coach says if’s a process. Hopefully this get’s them over the close loss hump.

  • tin mad dog

    Hopefully, we’ll blow spartie out. That would be a shocker.

    • Mith

      Man, wouldn’t that be nice. These nailbiters have aged me about ten years…

  • Mattski

    Would love to see Stu get his confidence back. But he has made some big plays the last few games. Meanwhile, (big brass) game balls to Zack, Darius, and THJr for their play down the stretch.

    • JimC

      Stu was 4-8 from three, and was our 3rd leading scorer. Pretty good game.

  • matty p

    great win. they finally showed some composure in the final 2 minutes and pulled this out. you can see how those close losses have, in turn, taught them how to act in those dire late seconds when behind. or how to keep your lead and realize that every field goal and free throw counts. beat sparty, win 2 games in the BTT, and get into the tournament. i’m confident we can.

    think of the team that lost to kansas. completely different team in terms of maturity and the way they play on the court. they’ve grown up a ton. that game could’ve had a different outcome if they kansas faced the michigan team we see now.

  • AG2

    Great to see we still have Minnesota’s number. Let’s just hope the players aren’t thinking about the Wisconsin game now too. 1 week to prep for MSU, let’s get it.

    Also, watch for other bubble teams. Hopefully they don’t get the job done. Minnesota’s done though. Shame, they’re a decent team and Mbakwe’s a legit star, but losing two of your top guards, that’s just tough luck this year. I still think Tubby’s the right coach for that program.

  • Giddings

    Huge win. Fitting that Novak steps up in the end and makes the most critical plays of the game.

    In other news, Texas has to stop losing to Big 12 bubble teams… nobody’s been talking about Colorado but they’re now 7-7 in conference with 5 wins against the Top 50.

  • cner16

    As big as this win was and as big a next saturday’s game against state is, I still think we need to get a couple games in the BTT to be inside the bubble. The hole in our resume is quality wins and beating Minnesota and State just isn’t “quality” enough (especially since their RPIs will drop with a loss). I won’t fell great on our chances unless we beat wisco, osu, or purdue in the BTT.

    Regardless, this team has exceeded all expectations. Its kind of hard listening to casual fans talking about this team doing what they were supposed to. If things don’t go UM’s way down the stretch, there is no shame in the NIT.

    • Giddings

      One thing to note is that if PSU wins 1 of their last 2 games (OSU and @Minn), they would likely creep into the Top 50, which would give us 2 extra “quality wins” for free. Our record vs. the Top 50 would move from 2-8 to 4-8… then if we beat MSU, 5-8 is pretty solid going into the BTT.

    • J.D.

      You still think we have to win a couple BTT games if we beat Sparty on Tuesday. I think we just need to win one or two depending on how we are seeded. But my prediction is 5th in conference (assuming a win over MSU) playing against Illinois. If we win that game we would have 20 wins, we would be without much argument the 4th best team in the conference, it would be wrong if the committee overlooked the 4th best team in conference or only aloud 3 big ten teams in the tournament.

      In short the only way we reasonably beat any of the top 3 teams is if we do it in the semifinals of the BTT. I think if we beat Sparty we just need to get to the semifinals (despite lacking a big win.)

  • Brian W

    Novak and Morgan did a great job fighting for defensive rebounds at the end of the game. Minnesota didn’t have second chance opportunities. Was also nice to see Michigan make a free throw and Minnesota miss when it mattered at the end.

    Larry Nance Jr. had 14 points today. His team is now 14-0 and has a sectional championship game next Saturday.


    • CJD

      I say Nance Jr is the guy to get for 2011; he is not allergic to the paint and can step out and knock down the jumper. Both qualities are what Michigan needs as they need an option other than Morris going to the rim to help stop the bleeding when they are cold from 3.

      • CJD

        That is of course they can not land an Otto Porter or Desmond Hubert type.

  • JW44

    There’s a scenario here that worries me. Say UM beats MSU and both teams finish 9-9. Both teams have similar results in the BTT (one win and out). Their overall records are about the same, and UM swept MSU. I’m not saying it’s fair, but I have a feeling MSU goes to the dance and UM is left out.

    • Jeff

      MSU has better wins than us. Not by alot, but they beat Wisconsin and Washington. I think our profile is only lacking a marquee win and that’s why we need to beat one of the top-3 in the BTT.

      • Tweeter

        thats what i hate about the selection process. I think they get too carried away with what team has the better resume instead of just looking at which team is best. Teams get way too much credit for beating one big time team (much like we did two years ago for beating Duke). I sure hope that whatever committee member makes the argument for michigan, they bring up the fact that a few bounces here or there and this team would have a whole bunch of huge wins, not just one or two.

        • Beast1530

          They’ll look at close losses against top 25 teams but in the end, it’s still a loss. As for selecting NCAA teams, you have to look at resume overall rather than H2H because this is a more random than looking at the season as whole. In order to get into NCAA tourney, you have show that you can beat quality teams which the committee selection tends to emphasize.

      • Brick

        MSU has only two actual road wins and lost to Iowa. I don’t think their fans will feel good about a bid if they lose to us.

  • AG2

    Michigan may not have many elite wins, but this team is NOT afraid to play on the road. This is arguably the best Michigan road team in years.

    Virginia tech is being setup for bubble greatness tonight: prime time home game vs. Duke. Gotta get a Duke win here.

    • MarcO

      And baylor too. Need the aggies to win.

      This is as much about everyone elses bubble as it is about mich’s. Everything everyone is pointing out is valid: lack of quality wins, hot at the end of the year, etc etc. What also matters is what the other bubble teams do. The rest of the bubble can play themselves off the bubble.

      It’s better to be lucky than good!

  • Kainkitizen

    If I was the committee, if I had to put State in the tourney make them be one of the last 4 in and do one of the play in games for a #16 seed and then have them play and finally take down a #1 seed in the first round. (Just wishful thinking)

    It was a fantastic showing by the guys today. My opinion is depending on the end of the season seeding for the conference tournament. If we play Thursday and win, we would have to win on Friday also. If we start playing on Friday, we win and be very competitive on Saturday in the final 4, we be sitting and watching selection Sunday for our name to pop up at a 7-11 seed in one of the regional brackets.

    • J.D.

      Yep you’re right. To be real, I don’t see us losing to MSU at home, I think it will be a pretty victory for U of M. Us finishing 5th behind Illinois and playing them in the quarterfinals of the BTT. There is no way MSU wins in ANN Arbor right now, we have over a week to prepare against a team we already beat on the road. The way we ran the D, today, Kalin Lucas (MSU’s offense) is SOL. Green isn’t the post player Mbakwe is and is not the jump shooter Sampson III is. Sometimes their bigs hit a threeWOW, didn’t THJ make like 5/6 in a row. that kid need s to shoot 30 times a game.

      If we beat MSU, I’m curious to see our next game, call me crazy but I see us right now as empirically the 4th best team in the Big Ten.