The Michigan Wolverines are going to the Final Four for the first time since 1993, when the Fab Five was led by future NBA players Chris Webber, Jalen Rose and Juwan Howard. They had a fairly easy run through the South Region this year, winning three of their four games by at least 15 points.
Here’s a closer look at Michigan’s road to Atlanta.
Second Round- South Dakota St.
Final Score: 71-56
The Wolverines were simply too much for the Jackrabbits, as they stretched a four-point halftime lead to the final double-digit margin. Big Ten Player of the Year Trey Burke gave the Michigan faithful a scare when he hit the floor hard during the second half, but he only left the game briefly and got his worst game of the tournament (six points, 2-for-12 from the floor) out of the way early.
Michigan was led by Glenn Robinson III (21 points and six rebounds), Tim Hardaway Jr. (21 points, four rebounds and one assist) and Mitch McGary (13 points and nine rebounds).
Third Round- VCU
Final Score: 78-53
Michigan was easily able to deal with VCU’s vaunted pressure defense, as the backcourt of Burke and Hardaway Jr. kept the Wolverines’ offense on track and helped them turn the ball over just 12 times.
McGary led the charge with 21 points and 14 rebounds, with Burke (18 points and seven assists), Hardaway Jr. (14 points, three assists and two rebounds) and Robinson III (14 points and nine rebounds) also playing prominent roles.
Sweet 16- Kansas
Final Score: 87-85 (OT)
Michigan’s tournament run looked to be on the ropes with the Jayhawks holding a 14-point lead with less than seven minutes remaining. But Burke led a late charge, including the game-tying three-pointer near the end of regulation, and scored all 23 of his points in the second half and overtime.
McGary again led the Wolverines in scoring with 25 points (along with 14 rebounds), with Robinson III (13 points, eight rebounds and three steals), guard Nik Stauskas (11 points and three assists) and Hardaway Jr. (10 points, five rebounds and three assists) also making contributions.
Elite Eight- Florida
Final Score: 79-59
The Wolverines jumped on the Gators early on Easter Sunday, taking as much as a 24-point lead in the first half. Stauskas led the team with 22 points (6-for-6 on three-pointers), with Burke (15 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and three steals) and McGary (11 points, nine rebounds, five steals and two blocked shots) also filling the stat sheet.
A Look Ahead
Burke averaged 15.5 points, 7.8 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game on his way to being named the South Region’s Most Outstanding Player. If the Wolverines are to win two more games and win the school’s first national title since 1989, he will have to continue to perform at a high level and come through in the clutch.
Brad Berreman is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman24