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(4) Michigan vs. (4) Syracuse
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On April 1, 2013 @ 2:00 am In NCAA | No Comments
(4) Michigan Wolverines
Sunday’s Elite Eight matchup against the Florida Gators was business as usual for the Wolverines. It was another game against a team with a highly touted defense that had absolutely no answer for their offense. The Wolverines made easy work of the Gators, earning their spot in Atlanta with a 79-59 win. Trey Burke didn’t shoot the ball particularly well, but flirted with a triple double, scoring 15 points, grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out seven assists. He added three steals to boot. Nik Stauskas was on the receiving end of a few of his assists as he finished as the game’s leading scorer with 22 points. Freshman big man Mitch McGary once again was a force, going for 11 points, nine rebounds, five steals and two blocks. The Wolverines will go up against another top-ranked defense in the Final Four against Syracuse. The Orange will sit back in their zone and force the Wolverines to attack over their length. If the Wolverines shoot like they did on Sunday they have a great chance to be in the national championship game.
(4) Syracuse Orange
In a textbook definition of a defensive struggle, the Orange were able to avenge a late regular season loss against the Marquette Golden Eagles 55-39 in order to punch their tickets to Atlanta. The Orange held the Golden Eagles to just 12 makes on 22 percent shooting. Vander Blue and Davante Gardner were able to score 14 each, but only three other Golden Eagles scored and they shot a combined 5-25. Orange point guard Michael Carter-Williams controlled this game, scoring 12 points, grabbing eight rebounds, dishing out six assist and tallying five steals. All eyes will be on him in the Final Four. If the bright lights bring out the best of him and his teammates and they keep the Wolverines off of the offensive glass, they could get back to the national championship game for the first time since Carmelo Anthony was a freshman. The Orange’s length on the defensive end could really end up being the difference maker for them.
HOOPSWORLD’s pick: Syracuse. This year’s Orange team plays that 2-3 zone as well as any coach Boeheim team has. It will give Michigan fits, putting the Orange in a position to win the national championship.
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