Michigan made its first NCAA Tournament appearance in 11 years. Overall, it marked the 21st "Big Dance" the Wolverines have played in their history. U-M has a 42-19 (35-15*) record all-time in NCAA Tournament games.
Michigan will play Oklahoma in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. U-M holds a 2-0 all-time series lead over the Sooners. The last meeting between the two schools was a 63-52 Michigan win on March 22, 2004, in the second round of the Postseason NIT.
Michigan is 2-1 (1-1*) all-time against No. 7 seeds in the NCAA Tournament. With NCAA Tournament seeding starting in 1979, Michigan has never been the No. 10 seed. The Wolverines' lowest seed had been No. 9 in the 1987 and 1995 NCAA Tournaments.
Michigan is 3-0 (2-0*) all-time against Clemson. All three appearances have come on neutral sites. In addition to tonight's game, U-M has played Clemson at the 1987 South Florida Invitational in Tampa, Fla. (W, 93-88), and at the 1998 Maui Invitational in Maui, Hawaii (W, 59-56*).
U-M head coach John Beilein is making his fifth appearance in the Division I NCAA Tournament; overall it is his sixth after taking LeMoyne to the NCAA Division II Tournament in 1988. Beilein has a 7-4 record in Division I tournament games.
Beilein is one of seven different head coaches all-time to take four different schools to the Division I NCAA Tournament. Other names on the list include: Lefty Driesell, Jim Harrick, Lon Kruger, Rick Pitino, Eddie Sutton and Tubby Smith.
Manny Harris' 23 points give him the 21st 20-plus point game of his career and the 13th this season. Harris has reached double figures is 53 career contests. He also led the Maize and Blue in scoring for the 15th time this season and the 36th time in his career. Harris also led U-M with seven rebounds and six assists.
Stu Douglass reached double figures for the ninth time this season. His five free throws made and six free-throw attempts are both new career highs.
Michigan is now 23-0 under John Beilein when the Wolverines have a better field-goal percentage than their opponent. U-M shot 39.2 percent (20-of-51) to Clemson's 32.3 percent (21-of-65).
The Wolverines made 10 three-pointers in the contest, marking the 11th time this season the Maize and Blue has made 10 or more threes in a game. U-M led the Big Ten in trifectas per game (8.63) this season, which is 15th in the nation.
Zack Novak dished out a career-best four assists, helping to U-M to 16 total in the contest. Novak's previous career best was three, a mark he has reached on five occasions.
Manny Harris has started all 66 games in his Michigan career. He is the only Wolverine on the roster that has started and played in every game of his career. Stu Douglass is the only other Wolverine to have not missed a game, playing in 34 straight contests, with 22 starts.
Q U O T E S
Michigan Head Coach John Beilein
Opening statement... "I thought our defense today was really a big factor in this game. If you look at the stats between (Terrance) Oglesby and (K.C.) Rivers, (they were) two-for-something from the outside. We had to have great perimeter defense because (Trevor) Booker is so loaded inside and has a feel for offensive rebounds, it's incredible. We had to hang in there. Obviously they did a great job on the boards; they're really good in there. I love the way our kids persevered after they hit the three threes and we missed open ones and had the three consecutive turnovers. Our kids still hung in there."
On Manny Harris' playmaking ability... "We could get the ball to him on the press. He just finds people very well, and Zack (Novak) hit some shots, C.J. (Lee) hit a couple and then he always finds DeShawn (Sims); he's always looking for him. He makes a big difference in our quickness and gets into the lane; he was our leading rebounder as well tonight."
On the play of Zack Gibson and Anthony Wright off the bench... "It was great. When they started to make their little run back, Zack had two tip outs that were huge for us to get it and then Anthony coming in, Manny drives the baseline and hits Anthony in the corner and Anthony hasn't played a great deal this year, but he has shot very well in practice. We felt he was the right skilled guy for their pressure and hit a huge shot for us and rebounded as well. We had a lot of guys that were ready to step forward today."
On his mindset when Clemson was making its comeback... "You know what, we had the two threes, which I didn't mind taking. Stu (Douglass) took one; Manny (Harris) took one wide open that might have sealed the game. They went in and out and they made the two. Then we had the three turnovers. We know we have a young team and we know we take care of the ball -- we don't have a lot of experience of taking care of the ball in the NCAA Tournament. I wasn't surprised. Somebody had to make one shot and we had to get one defensive rebound to be in position to win the game. Manny made the big shot and I don't think we ever got the defensive rebound we needed."
U-M Fifth-year Senior Guard C.J. Lee
On the performance of Manny Harris... "Manny did tonight what he was doing all year. We ask so much of him on a daily basis. He did a remarkable job of knowing when it was his time to take over. Just throughout the game his patience to know when to shoot. If he's got three guys on him, he's kicking out for shooters and when he's doing those things, we're a tough team to play against."
U-M Junior Forward DeShawn Sims
On the team's slow start. .. "Eleven years, first time in the tournament. We sensed as a team we want to stay in the tournament. It wasn't a compliment for us to make it. Anxiety kicked in, little anxious. At the end we were able to persevere. It didn't take long for us to get a rhythm. That's why we have great teammates. We pulled each other together and were able to sustain confidence throughout the game."
U-M Sophomore Guard Manny Harris
On his three-point play late in the game... "We work on that every day in practice, the two-on-one. The defender got in between me passing the ball to DeShawn (Sims). I went up and got my body into him and luckily I made the basket."
On the contribution of the bench... "The starting guys, we need little breathers to keep us fresh down the stretch and the guys, they came in off the bench and gave a great effort and that's one of the big reasons why we were able to pull out the win."
U-M Freshman Guard Stu Douglass
On starting in the NCAA Tournament as a freshman... "You can't really say it's another game. That's how you have to prepare. And we came out and our coaches had us prepared and we just had to be confident and trust in ourselves and you can't get nervous, and I don't think Zack (Novak) was nervous and I definitely wasn't nervous."