Believe it or not, it’s been five years since iconic Michigan coach Bo Schembechler died one day before No. 2 Michigan played at No. 1 Ohio State in the 2006 season finale, a game many called a BCS National Championship Game preview. Saturday’s Michigan-Ohio State game marks the sixth playing of The Game since Schembechler’s passing. Before the Wolverines and Buckeyes kick things off in Ann Arbor (Read the AP preview), watch former Wolverine and current LSU coach Les Miles reflect on his coach.
If you ask most national observers about John Beilein’s coaching style, you’ll hear phrases like “live and die by the three” or “offensive-minded.” In Maui, Michigan used none of the above to get an impressive win over Memphis. The Wolverines took their threes, sure, but they weren’t particularly good from there. Instead, they dominated the Tigers in the paint, making those national observers’ collective heads explode.
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The turnaround has been remarkable. Last year, Michigan finished last in the Big Ten in passing defense (261.9 ypg) and scoring defense (35.2 ppg) and 10th in rushing defense (188.9 ypg). This year, the Wolverine defense is No. 5 (316.0) in the Big Ten overall, vs. the run (131.6) and vs. the pass (184.4). And one of the reasons for the turnaround is end Ryan Van Bergen.
Find out more about: Big Ten Q&A
As we get closer to the Big Ten Football Championship, I’m seeing more and more mail on the end-of-season awards, bowl games and tiebreakers. I even got my first basketball question! I love to get your notes and encourage you to keep them coming. The more mail the better. Now let’s get to this week’s answers …
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(GopherSports.com) The No. 19 University of Minnesota volleyball team beat border rival Wisconsin in straight sets (25-21, 25-21, 28-26) Wednesday at the Sports Pavilion. The Golden Gophers (17-11, 10-9) swept the Badgers this season, also defeating UW on Oct. 19 in Madison, Wis. in five sets. Minnesota was led on the court by sophomore sensations Ashley Wittman and middle blocker Tori Dixon, both of which tied for match-highs with 14 kills. Read the full recap at GopherSports.com.