Q. For Stu, how much of the Duke game did you guys get to watch and could you give me your impressions?
STU DOUGLASS: Started out pretty quick. We watched a lot of film. Coach gave us a great game plan. Broke down a lot of stuff. Great team, lot of size. Lot of different ways — they can run their offense and defense. Lot of different, you know, matchups for us. It will be a good game.
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Against such an athletic team like Tennessee, Vogrich was pretty far down the list of expected impact players. As he’s done time and again this year, Matt made big plays after Tim Hardaway Jr. was sidelined with foul trouble. Vogrich hit a three today but that wasn’t where his biggest influence was offensively, he changed the game with his ability to catch Tennessee on backdoor cuts. Matt was 5 of 5 on the day and three of his makes, the ones featured in this video, came on backdoor cuts. The backdoor cut is the perfect counter against a defense that overpressures the ball and I think Matt is probably the best player on the Michigan roster at freeing himself on backdoor cuts.
Michigan’s season has been defined by ups and downs, more specifically within a specific game. Good stretches of basketball followed by awful ones and vice versa. Blow out wins have been few and far between and most games have been decided by two or three possessions in the final minutes. Here in Charlotte, Michigan played its best stretch of basketball of the season, outscoring Tennessee by 26 points in the second half. Michigan battled its way through the first half, leading by four at the break before opening the game up with a 19-2 run to start the second half.
Tennessee was the more physically imposing team, bigger stronger and more athletic at almost every position, but Michigan made it very clear who was the better team. Michigan scored more points in the paint (24-8), points off turnovers (11-4), second chance points (5-0) and fast break points (6-2). Those statistical categories are great measures of “want to” and teams that win those battles will generally win more games than they lose. The Wolverines 30 point victory was the largest margin of victory in an 8-9 game ever and Michigan’s most emphatic win since opening the season with a 31 point victory over South Carolina Upstate.