Hello, all. Dee, I can see how you might think the Fab Five won a B1G basketball championship, but that's one of the knocks against them. Though they came close to winning the NC a couple of times, they never won the B1G. People thought that they were always looking to the NCAA tournament instead of taking care of business, and of course, they were all together for only two years. Webber left after his sophomre year, I think. Even in the year Michigan won the NC (1989), they didn't win the B1G--lots of competition in those days and lots of fun. The so-called booster Ed Martin caused a great deal of harm to Michigan basketball, not during the Fab Five years particularly as most people think, but later. The stonewalling by Martin and others outside the University prolonged the NCAA investigation and penalties, and Michigan's self-punishiment was severe, thus keeping many star recruits from coming on board over the last fifteen years or so. It's no accident that Michigan State's BB program flourished during these years, either, beginning with Mateen Cleaves and the parade of stellar players from Flint who played for Izzo over the years. Only in the last couple of years has Michigan BB started to come back to what it once was. Beilein's coaching skills have been underestimated until recently when the program has attracted some high quality players. His rising prominence as a "good" and "ethical" coach and a Michigan degree (for those who choose to stay and take advantage of it) are huge draws now. Anyweay, you're right, Dee, it's a HUGE game for Michigan today. If they win (and that's a big if), they remain undefeated at home although that record won't help them much in the NCAA tournament.
Afternoon Umich. You're probably right about the Fab Five looking ahead to the tournament. They were very talented, but as you said their involvement with the booster hurt the program for many years. It's crazy when you compare the Michigan teams of that era with the team of today. Polar opposites.
Me, too, wmich. Even though the Buckeyes won on their home court, it wasn't an easy game (especially for Sullinger who has always had a tough time against Trey Burke, BTW). But, Sullinger will have to have a less than stellar game again, which is doubtful. I'll say it anyway: Go Blue!!!! But, it will be a tough test.
Well, wmich, I know this much for sure: Illinois should have a great incentive to win this game. The Illini have looked horrible over their last few games. It looks like lack of desire to me--they "give up" way too easily (unlike past Illinois teams, IMO). Some people think it's a coaching problem. Really? What do you all think?
Good luck to your Huskers, too, wmich. As for me, I have the added worry that I might lose my avi bet with sloopy and have to sport a big scarlet "O" for the next week. Yikes! Of course, if Ohio State loses, he'll be sporting a block "M"--that's what I'm hoping for, of course. In any case, it should be a good game. I hope whoever scouted the MSU/Ohio State game last week took good notes and Michigan adopts the same strategy against Sullinger. Can he have two bad games in one week? Let's hope so. Sloopydave has a wicked smile on his face.
Has anyone else noticed that B1G hoops is alot like B1G football in terms of winning on the road? With that in mind, I am going to say Michigan 62 tOSU 58, with Burke scoring 18 to lead the way for UM.