March 13, 2014
I'm a couple days late on this blog, so my apologies. If you didn't know already we are the outright regular season Big Ten champs!
The scene at Crisler Center was amazing for our last home game, as well as for Jordan Morgan's Senior Night. Our crowd was rocking, despite it still being spring break and the majority of the students not back on campus.
This shows how dedicated our Maize Rage is because our students were camped out even before we arrived, which is truly impressive. Also, all the Maize Rage and loyal Wolverine fans stuck around and watched us cut down the nets, which really, really meant a lot.
As many of you have probably heard, or read -- mainly from Coach Bacari's (Alexander) tweets -- that last Saturday was declared J-Mo Day.
Jordan has been with the program for five years now. I mean let's think about this. I was in seventh grade when he committed to Michigan in 2007! That is crazy. J-Mo is a true embodiment of a 'Michigan Man' and is a leader on and off the court. I'm not going to hype him up too much because I mean if you spend five years at Michigan how can you not be a leader and the best? See what I did there?
In all seriousness, Jordan has provided the consistent leadership and play that we needed to become the outright Big Ten champions. For all of you that do not know he is also getting his master's in manufacturing engineering after already getting an undergrad degree in industrial and operations engineering. Yea, that is a lot of engineering. Not many people can accomplish this degree at the University of Michigan let alone balance being a starter on the basketball team with this rigorous education. When a person has accomplished as much as Jordan there's really not much I can say to do justice to the matter. And for fun ... and a little interesting fact, I bench press more than he does and he doesn't read the blog so I can say whatever I want about him without him knowing.
Now onto the Indiana game.
Indiana is a very athletic and talented team. I have never seen a team get the ball out in transition as fast as the Hoosiers did. We would score and it would seem like before we could celebrate Indiana had the ball on our side of the court. See this is kind of a buzz kill especially for Andrew (Dakich) and Sean (Lonergan) because they kill it in the celebration game and when the ball is moved that quickly, it cuts into the celebrations.
Also, on a side note, Yogi Ferrell might be the quickest human being in the world. This attests to how quick Derrick (Walton Jr.) is because Derrick was able to not only stay in front of him, but he was able to cut him off on multiple occasions and get past him on offense.
We obviously had big contributions from our three main scorers Nik (Stauskas), Glenn (Robinson III) and Caris (LeVert), but there were many plays that were not noticed that helped us win the game. In film the day after Coach Beilein emphasized the little clips -- like Spike (Albrecht) swinging the ball one more so Nik could hit a shot or Jon (Horford) going over like three people to win a loose ball. For this game, plays like this helped us secure the victory. I'm not forgetting about Glenn's three in the corner though. That was a heck of a shot. Fortunately, I have a great seat on the bench so I was like one foot behind Glenn when he took the shot. I knew it was in the moment it left his hand. After the shot went in, the game was over.
Obviously this was the first time I had won an outright Big Ten title, but I have to say it was pretty darn cool. Even Charles Woodson was so excited he photo bombed our picture! I don't think I've seen such a good environment in the locker room before. We had tons of people in the locker room and everyone was just talking and smiling and the fight song we sang in the locker room was the loudest I've heard yet. Overall, it was a great day for Michigan. I was so glad to be a part of it.
I'm writing this blog the day before our first Big Ten Tournament game and we are waiting to see if will play Indiana or Illinois. Both teams have a lot of potential and are very talented so no matter which team we play it will be a battle. I don't travel because of my foot, but I am eager to watch this tournament on TV.
So I'm signing off now and I'll keep the blogs coming during the tournament.
P.S. -- The way things are looking right now, it really is great to be a Michigan Wolverine. (You have to read that sentence like you're singing the song.)
Stay chill and Go Blue.