PARK RIDGE, Ill. C After leading the Wolverines to back-to-back wins over top 25 teams, University of Michigan senior guard Daniel Horton (Cedar Hill, Texas/Cedar Hill HS) was honored as the Big Ten Conference co-Player of the Week, along with Iowa's Adam Haluska. The conference award is the fourth in Horton's career after earning the weekly accolade three times during his freshman season: Dec. 30, 2002; Jan. 20, 2003 and Feb. 24, 2003.
For the second week in a row, Horton has proven to be Mr. Everything for the Wolverines as he balanced scoring and quarterbacking throughout the week. The Wolverines won back-to-back games against ranked opponents for the first time in 12 years defeating instate rival and 11th ranked Michigan State, 72-67, followed with a win over 23rd ranked Wisconsin, 85-76. The two wins helped move the Wolverines into a tie for first place in the Big Ten standings at 5-2.
Horton closed out the week averaging 18.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists, and 1.5 steals and was a perfect 18-for-18 from the free throw line. With his performance from the line, he remained perfect in seven Big Ten games this season. His 38-for-38, which is the third best mark for consecutive free throws in conference games in Big Ten history, is just eight away from tying the all-time mark of 46 set by Indiana's Todd Leary (1990, 1992-94).
To start off the week, Horton came out against Michigan State (Jan. 25) and set the pace for the Wolverines as he had his fifth 20-plus point performance of the season with 23 on 6-of-12 shooting, including 3-for-5 from long range. He also had five assists and went 8-for-8 from the free throw line, as the Wolverines rallied from a seven-point halftime deficit to take the lead with 11 minutes remaining and hold on for the win. The win against the Spartans snapped an eight-game losing streak to ranked opponents and was the first against MSU in four tries.
Closing out the week against Wisconsin (Jan. 28), Horton became the floor quarterback. With Dion Harris (23 points) and Courtney Sims (18 points) producing much of the Wolverine offense, Horton controlled the tempo of the game. He closed out the game with five assists, two steals and one block in 31 minutes of action. He finished with 14 points, after tying a Crisler Arena record by going 10-for-10 from the free throw line (minimum 10 attempts). A late-game steal and two free throws sealed the win for the Wolverines and their second straight win against a ranked opponent, which hasn't happened since the 1993-94 season.
In his final season, Horton -- a Big Ten Player of the Year and All-Big Ten candidate -- is averaging career-bests in scoring (16.5), assists (5.44), steals (1.89), field goal percentage (45.5), three-point percentage (40.2) and free throw percentage (91.2).
Horton is close to cracking into the all-time top 20 for career scoring at Michigan (No. 22, 1,330). He became the seventh Wolverine to join U-M's prestigious 400 assists club (No. 6, 408) and the sixth Wolverine to join U-M's 150 steals club (No. 5, 158). He had a career-best 32 points at Minnesota last week (Jan. 21).
Michigan will hit the road for two straight Big Ten match-ups. The Wolverines head to State College, Pa., Wednesday (Feb. 1) to play Penn State at the Bryce Jordan Center. Tipoff against the Nittany Lions is scheduled for 8 p.m. and will be part of the ESPN-Plus local package. The Maize and Blue close out the week at Iowa, Saturday (Feb. 4).
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423