Dec. 19, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's basketball team held a media roundtable on Wednesday (Dec. 19) prior to its final game before the holiday break. The Maize and Blue will host cross-town foe Eastern Michigan on Thursday (Dec. 20) at Crisler Center. Following the EMU matchup, Michigan will have eight days before its next game against Central Michigan on Dec. 29.
The Wolverines, who played three games in an eight-day span from Dec. 8-15, will welcome an EMU squad that will make the short trip to Ann Arbor with a 6-3 record, including a recent win over Big Ten opponent Purdue. The Wolverines are looking to enter the holiday break with a perfect 12-0 record.
With a larger break than usual between games around the holiday, the Wolverines will get about four days off to spend with family and friends before returning for the remainder of the season.
In addition to head coach John Beilein, Jordan Morgan and Trey Burke speaking with the media, Tim Hardaway Jr., Mitch McGary and assistant coach LaVall Jordan sat down for brief interviews about what they are looking forward to most this holiday season.
Coach Jordan has something extra to be thankful this holiday season as he and his wife just welcomed their third daughter to the family on Dec. 10.
U-M Junior Guard Tim Hardaway Jr.
On his holiday plans this year ... "I'll be heading back to Miami, and it's a great opportunity to go back home. A lot of teams don't have a chance to do this because they have games right after break. I'm looking forward to spending time with family and going to Miami Heat games with my father."
On the favorite gift he ever received as a child ... "My father gave me a four wheeler for Christmas when I was about nine or 10, and I've loved it ever since. That had to be my favorite gift. At the time, were doing construction on my basketball court in my back yard, so there was a dirt road for all the tractors to use; so that made it a lot of fun."
On other places he has spent the holidays ... "When I was in elementary school and middle school, we used to go up to Chicago for Christmas with all our family, where my mom and dad were born. My grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins were all there. We had a great time, but ever since high school I've been in Miami."
On whether he has ever had a white Christmas ... "Yes, I have experienced a white Christmas a bunch of times, and I like that better than Miami weather because you get the full experience with snow."
On whether he has ever spent the holidays at NBA games ... "Never. This will be my first year going to a Heat game on Christmas day. I love NBA games, so I'm very excited to experience that."
U-M Freshman Forward Mitch McGary
On what he is looking forward to over the holiday break ... "Just getting a break. I'm probably still going to work out while I'm home, but it will be nice getting away from campus. I'm looking forward to hanging out with family and friends and sleeping in my own bed -- that's what I'm really happy about. My brothers and sisters still live in Chesterton, Ind., and my other sister is coming to visit from Texas, so that will be nice."
On the favorite gift he ever received as a child ... "Honestly, I don't even know. Seeing my family is always a great gift for me. Being at prep school for two years, I always looked forward to going home to see them."
On finishing his first semester at Michigan ... "The first semester is done and in the books, and I'm glad I passed everything. I think having this little break will allow us to focus on basketball and not worry about academics as much. It will help us going into the Big Ten season."
Michigan Assistant Coach LaVall Jodan
On spending the first holiday with three daughters ... "It's going to be fun. I'm looking forward to it. We spend time together as much as I can now but to have a couple days to be there for my wife and watch the girls is going to be great. The girls are so excited to play with the little one. They've been great with her -- they fight over who gets to hold her the longest, so that's fun. We're just blessed to have another addition to our family, especially around the holiday; that's the best gift you can get."
On what he enjoys most about the holidays ... "It's all about the girls -- all three of them now. Watching the smiles on the girls' faces when Santa comes, helping them put together toys, put batteries in and play with them all day -- it's all great."
On the team getting a larger break to spend with family and friends ... "It's good. A lot of them don't get to see their parents as much as others so to get a few more days at home, get a couple home-cooked meals is great -- probably by the end they'll be ready to come back. It's good for them to go back and see some old friends. They won't get a break like this often in their four years -- it comes around every once in a blue moon."
Contact: Tom Wywrot, Whitney Dixon (734) 763-4423