Rapid reaction: Michigan 71, PSU 65

March, 4, 2012
3/04/12
3:05
PM ET
A few quick thoughts following No. 16 Michigan's 71-65 win at Penn State on Sunday.

Player of the game: Michigan freshman guard Trey Burke. Burke led the Wolverines in scoring, but also made big shots and free throws when his team was reeling. Burke finished with a team-high 19 points, including 5 of 5 from the free-throw line. His layup with 1:24 left stopped a Penn State run and gave Michigan a 64-58 lead.

Unsung hero of the game: Penn State guard Jermaine Marshall. Michigan and foul trouble did a good job in limiting Penn State's sparkplug in Tim Frazier, but Marshall was able to get in the lane and use an inside-outside game to score a game-high 27 points, including 4 of 8 from 3-point range and 6 of 10 from 2-point range. At 6-foot-4, he also grabbed eight rebounds.

Second-guessing: If you are Michigan, you realize you got very, very lucky. Penn State had taken all the momentum in the second half, but putting senior guard Zack Novak in with four fouls only to have him foul out with 4:09 left and the Nittany Lions making a major run could have been a major turning point for Penn State. Burke carried Michigan down the stretch, but the Wolverines have to be smart in the Big Ten and NCAA tournaments when it comes to foul strategy -- something John Beilein is usually extremely cautious with.

What it means: Michigan put itself in position to share the conference title. If Ohio State beat Michigan State later on Sunday, the three would share the crown. Michigan's last Big Ten regular season title came in the 1985-86 season.

Record performance: Michigan has won 13 games in the Big Ten for the first time since 1993-94, when the Wolverines went 13-5. It was also the 133rd game senior guard Stu Douglass has played in, tying him for third place all-time at the school with former Michigan forward Courtney Sims.

Michael Rothstein | email

ESPN Detroit Lions reporter

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