In town playing Detroit, injured New York Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez toured Michigan’s new basketball Player Development Center on Wednesday. Not exactly sure of the connection, but here’s something we’re pretty confident about: Yankee teammate and Ohio State product Nick Swisher was nowhere near Ann Arbor and will have some choice words for the three-time AL MVP. See Michigan Basketball’s Facebook page’s picture of Rodriguez with the basketball staff in this post.
This week on “The Journey,” you got to experience Senior Night with some of the Big Ten’s biggest stars, including Michigan seniors Zach Novak and Stu Douglass, Ohio State’s William Buford, Purdue’s Robbie Hummel and Iowa’s Matt Gatens. It was moving footage, to say the least. Watch a segment from Sunday night’s show now and catch three terrific bonus clips inside this post.
Zack Novak is the face of Michigan, the embodiment of what John Beilein is trying to build the Wolverine program into in his fifth year in Ann Arbor. Just watch Novak on the court. The energy, the desire, the passion. And, the production. He’s the inspirational leader of a Michigan team that is 19-7 overall and 9-4 in the Big Ten, very much in the hunt for the Big Ten title.
The roster of games this week is littered with some intriguing matchups that will go a long way toward determining the pecking order at the top of the Big Ten standings as we enter the final few weeks of the season. And no tilt on this week’s list of contests is bigger than Wisconsin’s visit to Michigan State on Feb. 16. Now that you know BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart’s No. 1 game for this week, what about the others? Dienhart ranks them all, from 1 to 11, in this post.
Our Auto-Owners Insurance Tip-off Show, with Dave Revsine, Jim Jackson and Gary Williams, was live at Crisler Center before No. 22 Michigan hosted No. 20 Indiana on Wednesday night. During the 30-minute show, we had a feature where Michigan senior Zack Novak gave us a tour of Michigan’s new facilities at Crisler Center, formerly Crisler Arena.
Michigan picked up its first road win of the season in a hard fought two-point victory over Purdue. This was a mild upset, as Vegas had the homestanding Boilermakers favored by five points and KenPom had Purdue by four. This outcome certainly changes the season outlook for both squads.
This week we spoke once again with Julian Darnell, a BTN senior features producer who works on “The Journey: Big Ten Basketball 2012.” In the next episode on Sunday at 8 p.m. ET find out what drives Penn State’s first-year coach Pat Chambers and go behind the scenes at a Nittany Lion practice as well as at the Chambers household. (Watch a sneak peak now.)
Michigan’s Zack Novak has a knack for making the all-important plays for the Wolverines. Whether it’s taking a charge, throwing his body on the floor for a loose ball or grabbing a rebound, Novak is does all the little things to help Michigan. In Wednesday night’s game against Northwestern, he did all of the usual things, but he also added a not-so-common highlight-reel slam. In transition, Novak saw a hole in the Wildcats’ defense, and he took advantage with a powerful two-handed jam. Watch the big-time dunk now.