Nov. 10, 2012
By Morgan Bailey, U-M Public & Media Relations
Just minutes into the second half of the University of Michigan men's basketball team's game against Slippery Rock on Friday night (Nov.9), junior shooting guard Tim Hardaway Jr. drained a three-point shot, nothing but net. This time, however, the crowd cheered a little louder than usual, and his teammates jumped a little higher off the bench in celebration. In his first game as a junior for the Wolverines, Hardaway became just the 46th Michigan men's basketball player to reach 1,000 career points.
"It means a lot to reach the 1,000-point mark, but it was definitely a team effort," Hardaway humbly remarked after the game. "My team does a great job finding me anyway they can. It's that trust factor that we all have for one another, which is good for our team."
Hardaway was five-for-five from behind the three-point arc and posted 10 total rebounds, accounting for his fourth career double-double as a Wolverine. Always keeping the team in mind before him, however, Hardaway continued to dish out assists and help his other teammates make an impact in the game.
"My team did a great job running the offense and getting extra reps, but I wanted to get everyone else out there with an extra opportunity to have fun and play."
Aside from the contributions that Hardaway made in the Wolverines' decisive 100-62 victory over Slippery Rock, head coach John Beilein commented on the impact that the junior has had on the entire program.
"He has made a huge impact on Michigan basketball in just two years," Beilein remarked. "Our whole coaching staff values him very much. When you think that when he came (to Michigan), we were picked 11th in the Big Ten -- out of 11 teams. We haven't been anywhere near the back of the Big Ten since he arrived. We just love coaching him."
Hardaway has also made a continued impact on his teammates. He has quickly become a role model for the underclassmen to look up to, and his fellow upperclassmen agree that no one deserves to reach this landmark more than the dedicated Hardaway.
"He is definitely a role model to me," said freshman forward Glenn Robinson III. "As an upperclassman that has been here for three years, he knows what it means to be here and follow the Michigan way. I look up to him and I'm trying to be as good of a player as he is someday."
"It's an unbelievable accomplishment," senior captain Josh Bartelstein said. "It goes to show how hard he works every day in practice. He's always taking the time to get extra shots up. He's a great player and he does everything he can for the team to win. I couldn't be happier for him because he really deserves this."
After making five three-point shots in his landmark night, Hardaway is now just two three-point baskets away from passing Glen Rice (136, 1986-89) for ninth in the record books in three-point field goals made. Hardaway has yet to miss a game in his career at Michigan, and Friday night was the 70th consecutive game that the shooting guard has started for the Wolverines.
"Tim is everything that Michigan stands for," Bartelstein commented. "He's just trying to make the team better and that shows every time he steps onto the court."
Hardaway's celebration consisted of leading the team in the postgame locker room singing of "The Victors," but now the Wolverines will move on and focus on the next game. Michigan will host the north regional of the NIT Season Tip-Off starting Monday, Nov. 12, playing against IUPUI at 9 p.m.
Friday night's game against Slippery Rock marks the first victory for the Wolverines during the 2012-13 season, but it will forever be remembered as the game Hardaway scored his 1,000th point.
Michigan Scores 100, Smashes Slippery Rock in Opener