Final Horn: Ohio State 76, Michigan 66

Dylan Burkhardt

Michigan was without Caris LeVert once again and fell to a scrappy Ohio State team in Columbus on Tuesday night, 76-66.

The Wolverines continued to struggle offensively, but they also lacked the defensive effectiveness that they showed against Purdue. Ohio State’s offense was nothing special on paper entering the game, but Michigan couldn’t string together the stops or scores to build any momentum on the road at Value City Arena.

MVP: Mark Donnal

There weren’t many heroes for the Wolverines as Derrick Walton struggled from the field and Zak Irvin was plagued by turnover woes. Mark Donnal led Michigan with 17 points and six rebounds in the loss.

It Was Over When: 

Michigan managed to cut Ohio State’s lead to single digits at several junctures in the second half, but the Buckeyes always had the answer to stretch the lead back to 10. Michigan’s best chance was when a Zak Irvin jumper cut the Buckeye lead to 7 points with 4:52 to play, but Ohio State answered with a Trevor Thompson layup.

A driving and-one layup by Marc Loving helped the Buckeyes finally pull away. Loving’s drive past Aubrey Dawkins stretched the lead to 13 and the Wolverines were never able to threaten down the stretch.

Room for Improvement: Defense

Michigan’s offense was bad in the loss, but its defense was worse. The Wolverines allowed over 1.1 points per possession, days after they played their best defensive game of the season against Purdue. Michigan had no answer for Jae’Sean Tate’s motor and physicality inside and was outscored 38-26 in the paint.

Stat of the Game: Three-point shooting

Michigan’s three-point shooting woes continued as the Wolverines shot just 21 percent from three-point range. The loss marked the fifth time in six games that the Wolverines, once one of the best three-point shooting teams in the country, have shot 30% or worse from three-point range.

 four factors osu

  • gobluemd16

    It started crappy with the Caris injury news, got really crappy with the horrendous ESPN camera angle, and ended even crappier with the team’s play. All around dreadful night of hoops.

    • Tuff Enough

      I agree the camera angle was flat out crazy and we had a blast on twitter going off on ESPN and believe me they responded with a comment on TV too.

      • A2MIKE

        I missed the response from ESPN. What did they say?

  • bobohle

    I’ve always tried to remain positive with this team, but they are 25 games into the season and basically no defensive improvement. When the threes don’t fall or defense prevents them M has no secondary plan on offense. The coaches need to take responsibility. This team plays with no passion and in a rivalry game that should not be a problem.

    • JohnNavarreIsMyHero

      The most appalling thing was how this game appeared to be treated as a “throwaway”.

      And our play backed that up – Numerous plays where we just throw the ball away. The amount of careless turnovers Irvin has is becoming ridiculous.

      Even though we were never really out of the game at any point, I never actually felt we would come back or capitalize on the numerous chances.

      I had the exact opposite opinion against Purdue. We grinded and earned that one.

      I try to stay positive as well, but this performance was ridiculous.

  • Tuff Enough

    What telling to me and it a lot but Walton does not know is own guys and when he split the double team and drove to the basket and made a low pass to Dawkins that was cutting to the basket is a tell tell sign. Dawkins look at Walton and told him I need it high for the slam and I agree never pass low to many hands then can grab it from you..

  • malcolm bolt

    At this level, this late in the season, there were too many careless errors. Irvin dribbled out of control and would just cough up the ball. Dawkins is a one dimension 2 guard with no handle. Donnal seems to have a fear of dunking the ball. I begin to wonder if he and Doyle can jump over a napkin. Amazingly this team could actually be worse.

    • gobluemd16

      Dawkins can shoot the ball. That is literally his one skill. Can’t dribble/drive, rebound, or play defense at even an average level.