Photo: Detroit News
It’s only fitting that Michigan’s season ended in this fashion. Not with heartbreak at the buzzer, but with a second half comeback that nobody more than a couple steps away from the Michigan bench would have deemed possible. Duke was the bigger, stronger and quicker team and held a 14-point lead with 11:40 to play, even a 12-point lead with 6:25 to play. This game was supposed to be over. These are the defending national champions playing a psuedo-home game with a roster full of NBA draft picks and senior All-Americans. 12-point Duke leads are supposed to grow into 20-point leads rather than dissolve down the stretch.
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John Beilein, Stu Douglass and Zack Novak took to the podium and addressed the media after Michigan’s gutwrenching loss to Duke. We’ll have video later.
COACH JOHN BEILEIN: Great basketball game. So many ups and downs in the game and really proud of our team. I felt we spent a lot of time convincing them this year that they could win, no matter who they were playing against. They believed it and almost came through again today against another top, top team.
We’d like to have some plays back earlier in the game. I can’t even recall any of them, but there were a few. That’s part of coaching. Down the last few minutes, really proud of how hard — if you ever played the wing of a 1-3-1 zone, you are running for, you know, like crazy. The bottom guy is running from corner to corner. They did not show any fatigue in that and that was a great obviously thing for us to be able to go to that zone.
Here’s video of Darius Morris and Tim Hardaway Jr. facing the media in the locker room.
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Michigan will play its 35th game of the season for an opportunity to play a 36th. Tip off is scheduled for 30 minutes after the UNC-Washington game concludes, which is estimated around 2:45 pm. The game will be nationally televised on CBS or you can stream the game on NCAA.com. As always, we encourage you to join the discussion in the comments during the game and check out our various pre-game features.