The Bartelstein Blog: The Game, The Fans, Finishing Strong

March 4, 2013

Senior guard Josh Bartelstein begins his senior season and his third year writing the J-Bart Blog. He will give all Wolverine fans an inside look into the program and life outside of basketball during the 2012-13 season.

What's up everyone?

I know, I know. It has been awhile. However, as you have seen, heard and read, we had this big stretch of the season when we were just so busy. Throw in school on top of that and, well, I just have not had the time to write.

But now I do!

What a day and what a game! Crisler Center was rocking and everyone that was there witnessed an epic battle between two great programs and teams. Even with our student section on spring break, our fans were energized and made a huge difference in the game. I can only imagine what next Sunday against Indiana will be like!

I'm not sure where to exactly start breaking down that game, but Trey (Burke) probably isn't a bad choice. I can break down all his stats, the five steals, but more than anything, it is about his will to win. Trey was not going to let us lose that game. He gets knocked down almost every possession going to the basket, but he gets right back up and sprints back on defense.

I really hope people don't take for granted just how great of shape he is in and how hard he competes because they marvel at the spectacular plays he makes. Do you know how exhausting it is to run off ball screen after ball screen and then play defense like he does? It is something else. There aren't many words to describe Trey, so I'll just say that I LOVE being his teammate!

The next guy I want to talk about is Glenn (Robinson III). Glenn has all the gifts in the world to be a special basketball player. He took a big step Sunday with his toughness. People throw that word around a lot, probably too much, but when you take a charge on Derrick Nix, that shows some toughness. We talked all week about taking charges and not backing out of the way. Sunday was a perfect example of that, because the game swung early in the second half due to those charges.

The other freshman who was terrific was Caris LeVert. Caris brings a defensive tenacity that changes the flow of the game. He gets into people and the Spartans went back on their heels a little bit. We need that nastiness and that edge every game from everyone on defense. It makes good teams great and great teams elite.

Sunday was a great win, but we play again Wednesday on the road against another hot team. Purdue just pulled off a great win at Wisconsin. Yes, at Wisconsin. We need to get back to playing Michigan basketball on the road. Purdue runs a ton of ball screens with guys who can really shoot, and our ball screen defense will be put to the test once again. It is our last road game of the season and we need to get a win in a hostile environment.

Finally, to all the fans that read the blog, I appreciate the emails. Good or sometimes bad, the passion you guys have for Michigan basketball is what makes playing for this school and program so special. The one thing you have to understand is winning games in college basketball, especially in the Big Ten, is incredibly difficult. Just look at all the upsets that take place every week. There is so much parity and the margin for error continues to get smaller.

At this time of the year, the key is having perspective and seeing the bigger picture. If you do that, you realize how exceptional this season has been and it's only going to get better.

Keep writing into the blog at

Hopefully I see many of you at senior night next weekend.

Have a great week and Go Blue!

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