Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Instant Analysis: Michigan 60, MSU 59 F
By Michael Rothstein
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Here are some quick thoughts following No. 19 Michigan's 60-59 win over No. 9 Michigan State.
Turning point: Trey Burke grabbed a long rebound off a Keith Appling miss, drove the court and dished the ball to Stu Douglass for a layup and a 60-59 lead, which would be the final margin. It was the final twist for a back-and-forth game that saw both teams lead and saw the Spartans come back from a double-digit deficit.
Player of the game: Burke. The freshman carried Michigan on Tuesday night. He scored a game-high 20 points, but more than anything else, he controlled the pace of play for both teams. He also drove smartly and took tough shots -- including a quick 26-foot 3-pointer to tie the game at 52-52 with 5:28 left. This was the game where he went from an option for the Wolverines to the first option.
Unsung hero of the game: Michigan senior guard Stu Douglass. His stat sheet wasn't huge, but he scored nine points, made the game-winning basket and is the calming influence for Michigan's budding star in Burke. Also, he had his first start of the season tonight.
What it means: Michigan has now beaten Michigan State three straight times -- the first time that has happened since a five-game win streak from 1996 to '98. It also might turn the tide in a rivalry that had been majorly one-sided for Michigan State. It also gives the Wolverines a signature win for March in January.