Michigan Basketball (14-0, 1-0) will host Iowa on Sunday afternoon at Crisler Center. Tip off is scheduled for noon and the game will be televised on the Big Ten Network.
The Hawkeyes come to town with an 11-3 record and an 0-1 mark in Big Ten play. They feasted on a horrendous non-conference schedule to accumulate those 11 wins. Iowa’s strength of schedule is 314th in the country. Their best wins have been against Iowa State and Northern Iowa.
Michigan native Roy Devyn Marble leads the Hawkeyes is averaging a team-high 17.3 points per game. Aaron White is the only other Iowa player averaging double digits (14.7). Fran McCaffrey expects the ailing Melsahn Basabe to play against the Wolverines. In years past, Basabe has played well against Michigan. However, as Northwestern found out on Thursday, this isn’t the same Michigan team that Iowa has played the last few years.
The trip to Ann Arbor will be Iowa’s first time outside their home state since a November 27th loss at Virginia Tech.
#2 ranked Michigan is on an absolute roll to open the season and there is no reason to think that Iowa will be able to slow them down. Under McCaffrey, the Hawkeyes like to play uptempo and that suits the Wolverines just fine. Under the direction of Trey Burke, Michigan can run with any team in the country. The Wolverines rank 13th nationally in points per game (81.1) and 2nd in field goal percentage (51.7). So if Iowa wants to run, it might not work out so well for them. Another bad omen for the Hawkeyes is that the Wolverines are 9-0 at Crisler this year and 24-1 over the past two seasons.
Burke’s numbers are like something straight out of a video game. He is averaging 18.1 points, 7.2 assists, 3.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game. He’s shooting 53.8% from the field and 40.9% from three-point range.
Burke is surrounded by Michigan’s most talented roster since the Fab Five. There is no shortage of options for him to turn to for help. One player who has been on a roll of late is Jordan Morgan. He recorded his third double-double of the season in the win at Northwestern with 12 points and 13 rebounds. Morgan leads Michigan and ranks 2nd in the Big Ten in field goal percentage (63.0).
This Michigan team can do it all. They are deep, talented, athletic, can run, shoot the three and play strong defense without fouling. They don’t turn the ball over and they play with unselfishness.
Predictions: So far this season Joe and I are both 14-0 predicting the outcome of Michigan Basketball games. We both like the Wolverines to improve to 15-0 on Sunday. Although we differ on how close the final score will be.
Joe: Michigan 72-61
Rob: Michigan 83-66
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