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Missed free throws didn’t help, but rebounding more glaring issue for No. 7 Michigan

Mar 10, 2013, 6:48 PM EDT

In the final 38 seconds of their game against No. 2 Indiana, Michigan missed the front end of two one-and-ones. Missed free throws by Tim Hardaway Jr. and Trey Burke set the stage for a Hoosier comeback, with Cody Zeller scoring the last of Indiana’s six consecutive points with a layup with 13 seconds remaining to give IU the 72-71 win.

Michigan had two chances to win at the other end of the floor, but Burke’s running left-hander bounced off the back of the rim and Jordan Morgan’s follow did this:


The result gives Indiana (26-5, 14-4) its first outright Big Ten title since 1993, a major accomplishment for Tom Crean’s program given where it was when he took over in April 2008.

For Michigan (25-6, 12-6) this is a tough result to swallow, as it drops them to the five-seed in next week’s Big Ten tournament and means that they’ll have to play on Thursday (against Penn State). The concern for Michigan going forward has nothing to do with missed free throws, and in all honesty this area didn’t cost the Wolverines the game.

But if Michigan doesn’t rebound better than they did on Sunday their chances of postseason success diminish greatly.

Indiana out-rebounded Michigan 53-30, grabbing 24 offensive rebounds on the day. Victor Oladipo (13 total rebounds) and Cody Zeller (ten) combined for 11 offensive rebounds with Oladipo accounting for seven of those.

However the Hoosiers converted those second-chance opportunities into just 17 points, and when combined with Michigan scoring 19 points off of 14 Indiana turnovers it’s easy to see why John Beilein’s team had a chance to grab a share of the Big Ten title in the final minutes.

In conference games Michigan entered Sunday’s game ranked sixth in the Big Ten in defensive rebound percentage, grabbing 68.9% of their opponents’ missed shots. Indiana’s offensive rebound percentage on Sunday: 57.1%.

Despite their issues on the glass Michigan had a chance to put Indiana away at the foul line yet they failed to do so. Beating Indiana may have changed the tenor of the postgame chatter about the Wolverines, but not the message itself.

If Michigan is to have a chance of getting to Atlanta they need to do a better job on the defensive glass. Jordan Morgan (eight rebounds) by himself won’t be enough.

Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

  1. jpopejoy - Mar 10, 2013 at 6:58 PM

    HOOSIERS OUT RIGHT BIG10 CHAMPS!!! But lets talk about Michigan instead. Officiating let everything short of assault go. IU would’ve wind handedly had they got to the line on 1/2 of the hacks and body fouls that were let go.

    • florida727 - Mar 11, 2013 at 9:45 AM

      How’d you like to be having dinner at the Crean’s house over the holidays? Two brother-in-laws coaching against each other in the Super Bowl and the other brother-in-law coaching (arguably) the best team in college basketball. Like to be the proverbial fly-on-the-wall for that meal.

  2. Jeff - Mar 10, 2013 at 6:59 PM

    Another article written from who the Hoosiers played point of view, not the Hoosiers.

  3. deerslayer47 - Mar 10, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    At least now the Hoosiers don’t look like complete idiots for cutting down the nets after their loss to Ohio State.

    • dexterismyhero - Mar 10, 2013 at 8:09 PM

      idiot..It is a senior night tradition…go have some antler spray a$$wipe.

    • stlouis1baseball - Mar 11, 2013 at 12:03 PM

      Cutting down the nets? Seriously? You are on the “cutting down the nets bandwagon?”
      It was senior night. The last home game of the year. So…ummm…yeah. They cut down the nets.
      That’s what conference champions do. Are you new to the game?

  4. xli2006 - Mar 10, 2013 at 7:07 PM

    Is there a better resume in the nation than IU’s?

    ZERO bad losses (all Tourney teams)
    Beating 3 Top 10s ON THE ROAD
    B10 Champs (outright)
    26-5 (14-4)
    Swept Mich & MSU

    Not Gonzaga (no big wins, only 1 win over ranked team, not Duke (2nd in ACC), not Kansas (several bad losses), Georgetown (IU beat them on neutral floor). If not IU than who?

    That likely gives IU the #1 in the Midwest and a short drive throughout (Dayton > Indy).

    • tendigitpoet - Mar 10, 2013 at 10:20 PM

      There’s still the matter of winning the B1G tournament. Don’t count your 1-seeds before they hatch.

      • arlingtonsynn - Mar 10, 2013 at 11:45 PM

        Conference tourneys tend not to have a negative impact on seeding.

        They can move a team up or in (say a bubble team makes a strong run), but a loss in the B1G tourney won’t impact IU’s seeding.

      • stlouis1baseball - Mar 11, 2013 at 12:03 PM

        They will be the #1 seed regardless of how the conference tournament plays out.

  5. packhawk04 - Mar 10, 2013 at 7:18 PM

    First guy was right about officials. Whatever IU boosters paid them, idve doubled it.

    • dexterismyhero - Mar 10, 2013 at 8:12 PM

      Cornes don Bleu on you then. There is no Maize. Sorry suckers!!! Make a free throw and you win the game.

  6. dexterismyhero - Mar 10, 2013 at 8:12 PM

    sorry Corned don Bleu!!!

  7. midwestwarrior - Mar 10, 2013 at 8:44 PM

    in these conference tournaments, i believe the regular season conference champion should not be required to play. the conference tournament winner should determine who is 2nd best. if there is a tie however then all can participate, but these conference tournaments are bogus

  8. creek0512 - Mar 10, 2013 at 9:31 PM

    The media is so pathetic. It’s always about how a team lost, not how the other team won.

  9. badgerbuck - Mar 10, 2013 at 9:50 PM

    Have a feeling duke will be the overall #1 seed

  10. florida727 - Mar 11, 2013 at 9:42 AM

    I’m an SEC/Florida fan (go ahead with the thumbs-downs, I don’t care), but I’ll tell you what… I really look forward to watching Big 10 basketball. Man, those games are freaking brutal. I wouldn’t be surprised to see 2 or even 3 of them in Atlanta on April 6th and 8th. The Big 10 has had two Final Fours teams in the same season SEVEN times. I don’t think any other conference has come close to that. No conference has ever had three of the four. This could be the year if the matchups work out right.

    • Raphielle Johnson - Mar 11, 2013 at 9:49 AM

      Big East had three in 1985. Villanova (champion), Georgetown (runner-up) and St. John’s.

      • florida727 - Mar 11, 2013 at 10:54 AM

        Excellent research, my friend. Thank you for that. I thought there was one but couldn’t remember who it was. Appreciate the knowledge. The feat may get duplicated this year.

      • Raphielle Johnson - Mar 11, 2013 at 11:14 AM

        Wouldn’t surprise me if it did. Big Ten’s been outstanding this season.

  11. stlouis1baseball - Mar 11, 2013 at 12:06 PM

    Michigan St., Michigan and Ohio State have one home loss this year.
    Care to guess who beat them?
    This (above all else)…is the most impressive thing on their resume.
    And that resume was already top notch.

  12. stanmrak - Mar 11, 2013 at 3:56 PM

    Basketball – the only sport where you can get rewarded for committing fouls. They need to fix this and stop the intentional fouls. No other sport has this issue, and intentional fouls ruin the last minute of almost every close game.

    • stlouis1baseball - Mar 11, 2013 at 4:11 PM

      Baseketball – a sport in which you are justly rewarded for hitting the basic free throw.

      There…fixed that for you.

  13. stanmrak - Mar 11, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    Sorry, this won’t stop the parade to the foul line, which is what ruins most close and exciting games. It takes about 10 minutes to play the last one minute of close games because of the intentional fouls (the ones that aren’t called, even tho everyone knows they’re intentional). What a stupid rule.

    Again, no other sport offers the potential of a reward for committing fouls except basketball.

  14. stanmrak - Mar 11, 2013 at 4:34 PM

    I never watch the last minute of games ‘live’ for this reason. I go away for ten minutes, watch the last minute on tape and fast forward through all the stupid intentional fouls, time outs and commercials.

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