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Michigan, Trey Burke have date with destiny
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On April 8, 2013 @ 12:00 am In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Mike Lopresti, USA TODAY Sports
ATLANTA — The text to Trey Burke came direct from Michigan’s Fab Five glory days. Jalen Rose, to be precise.
It reminded Burke that he had gone to Ann Arbor with Monday night in mind, and now it was time. “Get it done,” it read. And at the end, “Hail.” As in, to the victors. You’ve heard the fight song. Only this time, if the Wolverines are victors, they get to cut down the nets.
“One of our words,” Burke was saying Sunday. “That means so much to the whole team.”
It is in Burke’s hands now. His and his teammates. They know what Monday night means against Louisville, and the chance to carve their own initials into the rather peculiar history of Michigan basketball.
“We’ve thought about that,” Tim Hardaway Jr. said. “I’d be lying if I didn’t say that.”
It will hardly be easy. Burke comes off a seven-point shooting game where the basket seemed to shrink to the width of a saucer, though he did have the four assists against Syracuse, the three steals, the one turnover in 38 minutes. “What you have to understand,” coach John Beilein said, “it’s more than just that box score.”
And now the Louisville championship-seeking pressure is aimed at Burke. All 6-foot of him. “It will come down to a battle of will,” he said.
It could also be history. Michigan does not own a garden variety past. This is the program whose most glamorous era – the Fab Five — has been officially eradicated because of money that Chris Webber took (not the sixth timeout he called). The national runner-up banners are now are stored in the school library.
This is the program whose only national championship was won with an interim coach. Steve Fisher replaced Bill Frieder just before the 1989 tournament because athletic director Bo Schembechler was irate that Frieder had accepted a job at Arizona State. His famous retort was that a Michigan team would be coached “by a Michigan man.”
Frieder had to watch his players win the national championship from a hotel suite. He is here this weekend calling the game for radio, overjoyed … [For more on Michigan, Trey Burke have date with destiny, click here.]
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