When Jordan Morgan went down with what looked a serious ankle injury in Sunday’s 74-60 win over Illinois. Although it looked a lot worse than it turned out to be. No break, only a sprain for the Michigan junior. After missing the win against Northwestern, the 6-foot-8 forward could be available for Saturday’s marquee matchup against Indiana.
According to reports, Michigan head coach John Beilein has not ruled out Morgan, at least not yet.
“I want to do what’s best for the team and best for him,” Beilein said before Friday’s practice. “You’re looking long-range — at the same time, you never know if he can give us a few minutes. We don’t want to experiment with him. Let’s see what he does. I don’t hold this high regard for who starts.”
Michigan was waiting to see how Morgan he looked six days after suffering the sprain. If Morgan can’t go with the injury, Jon Horford is slated to start in his role, like he did on Wednesday, with freshman Mitch McGary coming off the bench. Even if he doesn’t start, Beilein could still use Morgan off the bench.
In Wednesday’s win against Northwestern, Horford and McGary combined for 16 points and 18 rebounds. Whether Morgan can go or not, Michigan will obviously need strong play from its bigs on the road in one of the toughest places to play against one of the best big men in the country, Cody Zeller.
“We have more length when Jon or Mitch is in there,” said Beilein. “Cody’s a load no matter who you have in there.”
Terrence is also the lead writer at NEHoopNews.com and can be followed on Twitter: @terrence_payne
No. 15 Cincinnati pounced on Memphis from the start, taking a 51-32 lead into halftime.
Then, Gary Clark decided to add insult to injury to start the second half. Seriously, how did he catch that?
Mick Cronin’s team is much better offensively than in previous seasons. I’m sure fans in the Fifth Third Arena can get used to seeing more plays like this.
Michigan State freshman guard Cassius Winston had just one field goal in the first half. And it was a half-court buzzer-beater as the Spartans capped a sizable run to take a 49-31 lead over Nebraska going into the break.
The Spartans ended the half on a 21-5 run.
Winston provided a serious boost off the bench during that stanza. Moments earlier, he helped the Breslin Center erupt when he lobbed a pass off the backboard to teammate Miles Bridges.
Michigan State opened the day projected as one of the final at-large bids in the NCAA Tournament. The margin for error is thing and it appears the Spartans are playing with a sense of urgency.
Wednesday’s slate of games had several wild results.
Former Ohio State walk-on turned blogger turned author Mark Titus, who is currently writing for The Ringer, joined Rob Dauster on the latest episode of the CBT Podcast to go over last night’s games. The two also discussed who is the best team in the nation at the moment, as well Frank Mason III’s rap single from several years ago #BIFM
You can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher and Audioboom
North Carolina’s Roy Williams called fellow Hall of Fame coach Rick Pitino to apologize for a fan’s behavior during Wednesday night’s game in Chapel Hill.
While leaving the floor at halftime, Pitino had to be restrained by members of the Louisville coaching staff and he and a UNC fan exchanged words as he made his way to the locker rom. There’s video of Pitino pointing and shouting at a fan, who reportedly said, “Pitino, you suck!”
“I don’t like that,” Williams said, according to the Charlotte Observer. “I mean we’re in North Carolina. We don’t have to be like everybody else. We can raise Cain. You can boo, but you don’t have to say the stuff that we as coaches have to put up with.”
“I hope that never happens at North Carolina ever again.”
No. 8 North Carolina defeated No. 7 Louisville, 74-63.
STILL TO PLAY
Georgia at Alabama (RPI: 68, KenPom: 61, next four teams), 7:00 p.m.
Nebraska at Michigan State (RPI: 43, KenPom: 55, No. 10 seed), 7:00 p.m.
Towson at UNC Wilmington (RPI: 41, KenPom: 57, No. 12 seed), 7:00 p.m.