Final Horn: SMU 82, Michigan 58

Dylan Burkhardt

Michigan went on the road and was trounced by SMU on Tuesday evening, leaving with a 82-58 loss. SMU dominated every facet of the game and Wolverine guard Caris LeVert finished 1-of-13 from the floor and didn’t record his first made field goal until there were less than five minutes left in the second half.

It was over when…

For all intents and purposes, Nic Moore ended this game in the first half. The 5-foot-9 point guard hit back to back three-pointers to stretch SMU’s lead from three to nine points and then followed threw three straight assists to stretch the lead to 14. Michigan would cut the lead back to nine points in the second half, but never threatened as SMU kept the Wolverines at bay.

Player of the game: Jordan Tolbert

Jordan Tolbert didn’t do anything particularly fancy, but he swallowed up every rebound and drop-off pass en route to 23 points on 11-of-12 shooting and nine rebounds. Tolbert was forced into major minutes when starting big man Markus Kennedy went down with an ankle sprain in the opening moments, but the No. 5 offensive rebounder in Division I had no problem slicing up Michigan’s defense with slip screens and lobs.

Stat of the game: SMU Three-Point Shooting

SMU and Michigan both entered this game shooting 44% from three-point range and the Mustangs shot the lights out from three-point range in the easy win. SMU made eight of its first 11 three-point attempts and finished shooting 53% from long distance.

Room for improvement: Defensive Rebounding

This was Michigan’s worst defensive rebounding performance since Kentucky rebounded 63% of its misses against Michigan in the 2014 NCAA tournament as SMU grabbed 54 percent of its missed shots on the night.

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  • NbobBis

    Irvin is broken and Beilein is the one who broke him.

    • Tuff Enough

      No way Irvin was a one trick pony and now his back hurts.

  • NbobBis

    Part of me says a loss is ok if you learn something from it. But the only thing we have been learning lately is how to lose.

    • Tuff Enough

      Amen brother, but I do believe Beilein will start cutting the fat after this year and needs to and bring in a couple walks on with some fight like Iowa does 17 players on the Bench with 4 walk ons.

  • Tony DeMaria

    Beilein made the new era of UMBB and he’s killing it now with poor recruiting and poorly structured teams.

    It’s one thing to lose to SMU, UConn and Xavier, but to be completely outclassed in all 3 games shows we are a lower middle level BIG team with a long way to go to get back to the tourney.

  • MLaw

    6 winnable games in a row to figure out how to play defense again. Even average is good enough, but we aren’t close right now. Hopefully we have a HARD month of practices ahead.

  • gobluemd16

    It is not as bad as it seems, but it is bad. This team can’t stop anybody, or finish possessions with a rebound. Got absolutely nothing from the 5 position, again. Gotta play Wagner through mistakes because none of the other options have any upside. Feel bad for Caris, that was a scary awful game. Zak did some really nice things passing the ball, but his jumper looks totally broken. Even his three make was a bank.

    • gobluemd16

      Post got cut off: Dawkins looks like a chicken with its head cut off on defense. He isnt good laterally, but someone so athletic can’t be that bad on defense. Duncan needs to take almost all his mins, his jumper is obviously sweet and he draws so much attention.

  • jblair52

    In our 3 losses…
    Outrebounded 80-134.
    FT%: 69% – 77%
    3P%: 31% – 45%

    If you insist on playing small ball, then excel at small ball. But don’t get blown away on the boards and behind the arc!

  • NbobBis

    People will say that Irvin had a good game distributing the ball. But thats not his job. He is out there to make shots. They were obviously leaving him open. We need scorers and just having Duncan Robinson is not good enough.

    • bobohle

      They all looked afraid to take the shot. Even Robinson a couple times.

  • bobohle

    Offensively we looked like we haven’t practiced together. Defense is the same as last year at this time. Not good.

  • DetroitDan

    I’ve got to blame the coaching staff for such a massive failure. LeVert, Irvin, and Dawkins all had off nights. This may be a coincidence, but it’s also possible that we had a poor game plan.

    1. With Walton out, we needed a point guard to force the offense. Instead, we let the shot clock expire without attacking the basket.

    2. We didn’t have an answer for the never-ending series of dunks. We have some athletes on our team, most notably LeVert, and should have deployed them to neutralize the dunk monster.

  • Chezaroo

    We are what we are. Incredibly disappointing that a school with the resources and facilities of a Michigan can recruit this poorly. Having not one legitimate option for a big man is just unacceptable. No matter how incompetent our perimeter D is, having four MAC level bigs exposes you every time when you play good teams. Recruiting has just got to improve going forward. Need more legitimate B1G players to compete successfully in the future. Hate to over react, but does anybody really believe that this team is a tourney team? Really? Every good team we’ve played has blown us out. Just don’t think we have the hosses to make it this year. Doesn’t mean I’ll stop rooting, but when you can’t stop anyone and absolutely can’t rebound, it’s too difficult to win consistently.

    • MichiganBasketball

      I agree, i think the program has peaked

    • Tuff Enough

      They will see it will take more than just 2 stars that Beilein brought in last year and I think the kid from ohio is the real deal playing point guard and the shoting guard too. The 7 footer reminds me of frank the tank and that turned out great for Wisconsin so the troops are coming.

  • Fab 5 Legends

    we have been very dissapointing against tourny teams so far…i hope we get some big wins come big ten season…i still feel we will compete and have good wins to be on the bubble (at least i hope so) barring injuries Beilein should figure it out…our lowpost play has not developed since last year, might have regressed…Wilson, Donnal, Doyle are just not contributing…Duncan Robinson & MAAR continue playing well which is good to see for the near future

  • Tuff Enough

    I did not realize how experience that team was with 9 seniors and juniors wow. So its all good learning experience for are 9 freshmen and sophomores..Keep the heads up and move forward :)

  • Tuff Enough

    LeVert had is worst shooting game I have every seen and I am watching it now because I just came home awhile ago. Sad must have the rims to hard because his shots are always bouncing off the hard and you can hear it make the load clunk sound.

  • Tuff Enough

    The writers got to let Beilein know guys like Donnal will not cut the mustard in the Big Ten period Please!!

  • Tuff Enough

    Sport people that wrote that chapman was almost a 5 star recruit needs to be fired from that job.

  • robpollard

    Coach has got his work cut out for him, and he needs to figure it out. Still time to recover, but we are staring at a second year of an underperforming team if things don’t get fixed soon. This bad nonconf leaves little room for error in the B1G.