Jan. 31, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- University of Michigan men's basketball head coach John Beilein addressed the media on Tuesday (Jan. 31) to talk about the Wolverines' conference loss at Ohio State on Sunday (Jan. 29) and kicking off the second half of the Big Ten schedule with Indiana on Wednesday (Feb. 1).
After a low-scoring first half of basketball in Columbus on Sunday at Ohio State, the Wolverines headed to the locker room trailing by just three points, 21-24. A 16-5 second-half run by the Buckeyes built a deficit that Michigan could not overcome. The Wolverines moved to 6-3 in Big Ten play with the 64-49 loss to Ohio State. Sophomore guard Tim Hardaway Jr. (Miami, Fla./Palmetto Senior) led the Maize and Blue with 15 points and five rebounds, while freshman guard Trey Burke (Columbus, Ohio/Northland) scored 13 points and dished out five assists in his hometown of Columbus, Ohio.
Michigan, which is 12-0 at home this season, will start the second half of the Big Ten schedule by hosting No. 20 Indiana on Wednesday (Feb. 1) inside Crisler Center. Indiana will be the first conference opponent that the Wolverines will see for the second time this season. Michigan was edged by Indiana, 73-71, on Jan. 5 in Bloomington, Ind., but the Wolverines have topped the Hoosiers in each of the last two times they have met in Ann Arbor.
Indiana will enter the matchup with a 17-5 overall record, including a 5-5 mark in the Big Ten. The Hoosiers are led by freshman Cody Zeller, who is tied for sixth in the conference in scoring with Hardaway, averaging 15.2 points per game. In the first meeting between the two teams earlier this season, Hardaway posted a team-high 19 points, while Zeller scored 18. The Hoosiers were led by junior Christian Wattford's game-high 25 points.
Michigan Head Coach John Beilein
Opening statement ... "We have a monumental task here tomorrow. Indiana is a very talented team. Coach Crean has a great plan for them and they've been scoring. They scored over 100 the other night, they've been averaging 78 a game, much like Ohio State averaging the same numbers. We really had trouble adjusting to how quickly they play, and as a result it got us down big. We fought like crazy, but it wasn't enough. We know we have to do a much better job of handling their pressure offense. They put pressure on you on offensively, and we have to be able to adjust to that."
On Indiana forward Cody Zeller and the Hoosiers' veterans ... "He's just really good, and been good for a long time. He just gives them that finisher around the basket. When all breaks down and they can just throw it to him, he knows what to do with it deep in the post. He passes it okay. He's got a good touch on the 12-feet-and-in catches that you just have to put in. He's been a big difference for them, and I've spoken before about their experience. Their minutes played in the Big Ten are probably the biggest of anyone in the league because they have so many juniors and seniors playing, and even the sophomores played a lot when they were freshmen."
On the starting lineup going forward ... "I'll go with the same starting lineup tomorrow. The rest of the way depends on how people are playing and what they're doing. But I like the defense that we can come out with. I like the matchups that we may be able to sometimes turn in our favor. I think we've gotten off to pretty good starts with this lineup every time that I can recall, except for Arkansas. Last time against Indiana, we got off to a bad start. (Indiana forward Christian) Wattford is having a fantastic year. They're the second or third leading three-point shooting team in the league and you've got to get to them in a hurry. So we're putting as quick a team as we can out there."
On approaching the second half of Big Ten play as a new season ... "I don't look at it that way, I look at it one day at a time. Because this is as good a year as there is in the Big Ten. I think the projections have eight teams in the NCAA Tournament. I can't recall that ever happening. I can recall four, five, six, and last year there might have been seven, but you've just got to take each day and just say, 'We have to make today our day -- today's the day we get better,' and see what we can do with it. I know it flies by; I know we've got five weeks left and six if you count the tournament. With four practices a week, that's 24 times to get better, which is what I focus on, and then the games just take care of themselves."
On the resiliency of the team to win the next game after each loss this season ... "I was very happy with how receptive we were yesterday to a very instructional film session, and just to talk about where we are right now and what we can do best to improve. We're coaching their brains a lot -- we coach their brains and their heart right now about what it takes to be winners. There's a lot of courage involved, a lot of toughness involved and there's a lot of intelligence involved. If they put that all together, how can you be anything but resilient? It's a new day, a new game, bounce back, get over it, and let's play."
Contact: Tom Wywrot, Whitney Dixon (734) 763-4423