Michigan 74, Illinois 60

Dylan Burkhardt

Dustin Johnston

Michigan faced adversity in Champaign on Sunday evening but eventually the Wolverines proved too much for Illinois, prevailing with a 74-60 road win.

Jordan Morgan went down with an ankle sprain just two minutes after the opening tip off and Michigan was left to battle with its reserves in the front court. While Michigan’s other four starters stepped up, all reaching double figures, the backup big men impressed as well.  Mitch McGary, Jon Horford and Max Bielfeldt all rose to the occasion, stepping up to contribute a combined 17 points and 15 rebounds in 39 minutes.

Trey Burke didn’t have his best shooting night, finishing 7-of-19 from the field, but led all scorers with 19 points.

The win keeps Michigan at the top of the Big Ten standings, tied with Indiana at 6-1 – where the Wolverines will travel on Saturday – and in line for the No. 1 ranking in this week’s AP Poll.

  • DB

    One of the 5 key plays should be Bielfeldts two made FTs. Illinois was on a run to cut it to 4 and the crowd was going nuts because of the airball. Those were huge shots and Michigan was never really threatened after that.

  • gobluemd16
  • Kenny

    no matter what people say, this #1 ranking means a lot to Coach Beilein and to this program.

  • DB

    I’m not 100% convinced Kansas won’t jump them. Fortunately, this isn’t like football where it makes much of a difference. They really just want to be top 4 to the committee at the end of the year.

    • gobluemd16

      Yeah, they have lost less recently (second game of the year), and just beat Kansas State on the road this week, but I still think we get it in the AP Poll. Most people look to that poll as being a little more legit. Hopefully voters realize that being 19-1 and 6-1 in the toughest conference in America deserve the #1 ranking.

  • jemblue

    I think it may be a split, with us #1 in one and Kansas in the other. That’d be fine with me, I don’t care.

  • Mattski

    The combined frontcourt strength with Robinson’s opportunistic point scoring is going to be too much for all but a couple of teams in the country. Two weeks ago at OSU we looked like a very young team. Tonight we did not. Statement game for Michigan.

    Lot of people criticizing Trey’s “off night” over at mgoblog. But he showed so much fire and savvy despite missing a few extra. . . I’m not sure this wasn’t one of his BETTER nights where sheer determination and leadership were concerned. Hardaway has stepped up, meanwhile, in every facet of his game.

    • mistersuits

      His Kemba Walker impression on the halftime buzzer beater was spot on.

  • hailtoyourvictor

    Will Morgan be ready to go by the Indiana game Saturday? That was a nasty looking ankle roll.

    • mistersuits

      If he couldn’t put weight on it as Coach B said, then you’re looking at being out a couple of weeks best case scenario.

  • Northern Blue

    Hardaway is playing so well right now, when he lets the game come to him he is excellent. His defence is really good of late as well. I can’t believe he has turned into such a complete player. He only scored 12 points, but he looked great tonight. Sometimes Trey forces things a little too much… the problem with someone that can get his shot whenever he wants and has the talent to make high difficulty shots. After one of his turnovers this game, he went right into one on one mode at the start of the shot clock, which I didn’t like. UM will lose to very few teams if they share the ball, rebound, and defend. Love em in transition.

    • gobluemd16

      You are totally right. Tim looked really, really good tonight, and I agree, I am often wondering why Trey overdribbles at times.