Game 21: Michigan vs. Rutgers Recap

In a year, Brandon Johns went from wondering to himself if he was even good to dominating at MSG. Love to see it.


That run they had in the second half was the best they have played in a long time.


I really liked the balanced scoring in this game

Not sure I’ve ever seen a shot differential that large. 36 more FG attempts by Rutgers is just insane. Good win though. Playing Rutgers is just a grind.

I’m sure the story if we lost in large part would have been giving up a home game to play at MSG. However, it seemed like a great atmosphere based on the telecast and a good experience for all those involved.


The rest of the season is tenuous unless Livers comes back healthy, but if I’m not mistaken, Michigan only has one loss to a non-tournament team (Minnesota.)

Telling that Juwan quickly learned that he had to shorten the bench. He’s smart and adjusts.


Who the hell was that out there in Brandon John’s jersey today? That was insane. Really happy for him. The team still has a lot to figure out obviously, but this game was really encouraging.


Johns driving off the closeout and kicking to Eli for the corner three was awesome to see. He’s come a long way from early in the season when he was chucking passes off the side of the backboard.


It seems to finally be clicking for him. His spacing on offense has really improved the past couple of games.

I’m super happy he’s putting points on the board, but his overall improvement of where to be on offense makes me even happier.


Don’t want it to be a primary option, but wouldn’t mind settings a few more pics for Wagner and let him drive to the basket. He can drive and finish, you just have to be okay with him turning it over a couple times.


I felt like Teske made some strong plays at both ends of the floor that we haven’t seen from him in a while. His first dunk actually caught me off guard, as he just doesn’t ever seem to dunk anymore. These were great signs going forward, and I’d expect to see more of that against a OSU team that is not very tall.

Franz is going to be such a different player next year. The weak passes will be gone, and he’ll be the one winning loose ball battles and nudging guys away from rebounds. It’s going to be exciting to watch. What I loved today is that he drilled 2 clutch free throws, only a week after missing 2 biggies against Illinois. That’s how it’s supposed to work.

One officiating note that some may find interesting…one of today’s officials, Donnie Eppley (the guy with the arms) is obviously very good, or he wouldn’t be working B1G games. But, he is the perfect example of an official who isn’t quite at the top of the heap because he has one big flaw. Every game, he will make one or two calls that will make even an impartial observer say “WTF was he thinking?”. Today, it was the open court charge call on X. Next time you watch a game, Eppley is working it, and you see a WTF play, take note of whose call it was.


Completely agree about Teske and Franz. I still don’t love Teske’s post moves, I think his turn-and-throw move is sloppy oftentimes, but like you said, he made some strong plays and dunked well and that was great to see again. Just wish he had slightly better or at least more consistent post moves. Overall great game from him though.

The turnovers were pretty aggravating but outside of Rutgers at the RAC, I don’t think any team on the schedule will pressure that much. It kind of felt like watching the old Illinois teams playing defense when Underwood first got there.

Brooks didn’t convert, but he did have a nice backdoor cut on the very next possession after Young jumped a passing lane (I think it was around 8 or 9 minutes left in the second half). At least he saw the counter.

Dylan - You were there today? What was the crowd like? TV broadcasters made it sound like it was mostly Rutgers at the beginning of the broadcast but they kind of walked it back during the game and said it was more 50/50. And do you have any thoughts on UM/Simpson’s neutral court dominance or is it just one of those weird things?

FWIW, I didn’t think the half-court block call was too egregious. The Rutgers player was there and stationary three steps before Simpson got to him. If Simpson doesn’t hit him flush, it’s probably a block, but hitting him square and losing the ball kind of forced the ref to make that call.

Also, the post-game interview between Howard and Seth Davis where Howard had no clue what the RAC was was priceless.


Michigan really played great outside of defensive rebounding and the sloppy turnovers. The rebounding was ugly, but quite a few of those TOs seemed like the type of play where every team gets away with it 95% of the time. Rutgers just plays so hard that you can’t pull the same lazy routine BS against them. Props to their collective engine, a lot of teams would be way better if they played with Rutgers-level intensity for every defensive play

Yep I was there. The media seating was right in the middle of the main Rutgers fan sections so it definitely seemed to be a pro Rutgers crowd.

Michigan had plenty of fans there though and they came alive in key spots.

To be honest, it was a great atmosphere. Back and forth, fans on both teams. I love neutral court games with that sort of dynamic.


iTs TiMe FoR dAvE dEjUlIoUs tO tAkE oVeR tHiS tEaM x CaNt ShOoT

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Happy for Johns, If Livers returns I could envision them on the floor at the same time. It’s good to see all the Johns haters go away for a game.


Great performance. I’m a bit worried that it’s unsustainable due to how great Johns played today, but if he can keep doing that, this team can really rebound even with Livers injured.