John Beilein

Wisconsin tops Michigan on the road 75-62, fourth straight win


On Jan. 18, Nik Stauskas scored 23 points Michigan’s 77-70 win over then-No. 3 Wisconsin inside the Kohl Center. That was at the point of the season where both teams were going in opposite directions. The Wolverines had won seven straight, a streak that would reach 10 games. Wisconsin, on the other hand, had dropped its second consecutive, the start of slump in which the Badgers lost five of six games.

Sunday afternoon, Wisconsin returned the favor with a 75-62 road victory in Ann Arbor, controlling the game from the start, and answering a Michigan threat in the second half.

Frank Kaminsky had a big afternoon with 25 points and 11 rebounds (he had 14 and four in the first meeting) and dominated the Michigan forwards on the block. The Wisconsin offense started out hot, hitting 5-of-6 from the field to start the game, and took care of the basketball throughout — 10 assists to two turnovers.

Michigan, however, struggled in the first half with only 19 points, off 32 percent shooting. Despite its best effort, Michigan’s first half was too big of a hole to dig out of. The Wolverines cut the lead to five, 52-49, with Caris LeVert, who scored a career-high 25, doing most of the damage. The Badgers responded with a 10-2 run to put the game out of reach.

Outside of LeVert, Michigan struggled offensively, a product of the Wisconsin defense, which limited Michigan’s transition opportunities in the first half. John Gasser, who gives up three inches, was also able to hold Nik Stauskas to 11 points off 4-of-11 shooting while Glenn Robinson III, Derrick Walton and Zak Irvin shot a combined 6-of-22 for 16 points. And for Walton, this is coming off the best game of his young career against Ohio State.

Overall, this was just a bad afternoon for the Wolverines, but this outing might be cause for concern. Stauskas’ points per game are down in the last five games (Michigan 2-3 in that stretch) and Robinson has had his struggles offensively as well over the course of the past few weeks.

Michigan has a week-off before hosting Michigan State on Sunday afternoon, with first place in the Big Ten potentially on the line.

Louisville’s Rick Pitino on allegations: ‘We will get through this’

Rick Pitino
AP Photo
1 Comment

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) Louisville coach Rick Pitino remains defiant that his program will survive the allegations in a book by an escort alleging that former Cardinals staffer Andre McGee hired her and other dancers to strip and have sex with recruits and players.

Pitino said Tuesday that the Cardinals “will get through this the right way.”

The coach told a packed room at a tipoff luncheon that he understands the motivation behind Katina Powell’s book “Breaking Cardinal Rules: Basketball and the Escort Queen,” but questions the need for the alleged activities given the talent his program has produced.

Pitino added, “We will find out the truth, whatever it may be, and those responsible will pay the price.”

Georgia Tech lands Class of 2016 guard

Brian Gregory
AP Photo
Leave a comment

Georgia Tech picked up its third Class of 2016 commitment on Tuesday as the Yellow Jackets landed a pledged from three-star guard Josh Okogie.

The 6-foot-4 guard is considered the No. 143 overall prospect in the national Class of 2016 rankings and Okogie played with a very talented Team CP3 in the Nike EYBL. In 22 games this spring and summer, Okogie averaged 10.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.6 steals per game while shooting 45 percent from the field.

Okogie joins three-star wing Christian Matthews and four-star big man Romello White in head coach Brian Gregory’s Class of 2016 at Georgia Tech. The group is definitely a solid influx of talent with some coming from successful grassroots programs.