John Beilein and MI are ready for a much-needed breather.
Rutgers reinforced the point Sunday, falling at 23-ranked MI 62-47 despite another rugged defensive effort. It was the fourth game in nine days for MI, which rebounded nicely from a 20-point loss at Nebraska on Thursday.
"That was our fourth game in eight days", MI head coach John Beilein told Big 10 network after the game.
U-M responded with five straight, including a triple from Wagner, to go back up 10, but Eugene Omoruyi answered with a three-point play at 15:13. Not allowed in the gym, don't touch a ball. You're just playing and playing, the repetition drills, we weren't doing any of that.
The Wolverines (17-5, 6-3) needed a strong second half to reach 43 percent shooting. Matthews leads MI in scoring with 14.9 points per game while Wagner leads the team in rebounding with 7.2 rebounds per game and Zavier Simpson leads the team in assists with 3.5 helpers per game this season. The Scarlet Knights beat Hofstra University with a score of 37-9 in their previous dual on January 19, 2018. The players have taken it upon themselves to be a better defensive team.
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As a team, Rutgers only had one assist and committed 13 turnovers.
Wagner said after the game in regard to Robinson's play, "that's the guy I know". "Coach said that in his halftime speech", Robinson said. They struggled to find their offense again, a trend they can not continue if they hope to compete at the top of the conference and play themselves deep into March. "But it was important to go through this stretch we just and they did exactly enough".
MI shot an uncharacteristic 37.5 percent overall (21 of 56) and 22.2 percent from 3-point range (4 of 18) in the loss.
Freshman Kate Cain, a 6-5 center from Middletown, N.Y., led Nebraska with 14 points on 6-of-10 shooting while adding a team-high eight rebounds and three blocks.
Rutgers: The Scarlet Knights were coming off an impressive 80-64 victory over Iowa on Wednesday.
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In the next 48 hours, it will be decided one way or another. "If you want to have a bit, it could happen". We defended very well, and it is fair to say Mike Dean and his team were very good.
MI and Rutgers play at 12 p.m. ET on January 21, 2018.
Today was another game with another slow start for the Wolverines. The Knights have always been a careful group on offense, turning he ball over at the lowest rate among Big Ten teams in conference. Rudy Tomjanovich spoke to the crowd while the 1967-68 team was honored, and Glen Rice came out on the court with Katelynn Flaherty during a break in the action.
Location: Crisler Center, Ann Arbor, Mich.
Last March, Michigan set the Pinnacle Bank Arena record for points by an opponent and matched the arena record with 14 made 3-pointers.
Rutgers was consistently bad offensively, shooting 8 of 26 from the field in the first half and 9 of 25 in the second. Senior forward Deshawn Freeman is averaging 7.2 rebounds per game for the Scarlet Knights. He said: "You can tell in this game that we are exhausted".
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Michigan: The Wolverines will have three days off before a big matchup Thursday night at Purdue.