Michigan (5-2) will host the # 4 ranked Duke Blue Devils (8-0) on Saturday at a sold out Crisler Arena. The game will tip at 3:30 and air on ESPN.
As everybody knows by now this will be the second time Michigan has played Duke this season. The two teams played in the finals of the 2K Sports Classic with Duke winning.
This will be the second time Michigan has faced a team ranked # 4. When Michigan beat UCLA the Bruins were ranked #4. This will also be the third time Michigan has played a team ranked in the top 10 (# 4 UCLA, #10 Duke, #4 Duke). Michigan’s strength of schedule has been ranked anywhere from 9-12 in the polls I have seen.
Duke has 4 players who are averaging double figures in scoring; Kyle Singler 17.1, Jon Scheyer 13.0, Nolan Smith 12.4, and Gerald Henderson 10.3.
It can only be a good thing that Michigan played Duke two weeks ago. Some of the awe of playing Duke will be washed away since they just faced them. Duke does have that swagger and intimidation factor that Michigan Football used to have. So that factor will be neutralized a little bit.
It is going to be critical that Michigan gets off to a good start and gets the sell out crowd revved up.
Duke just thumped Purdue at Mackey and has only played one close game this season, which was a 3 point win over Rhode Island.
It goes without saying, but I will say it anyhow, this would be a huge win for Michigan’s NCAA tournament resume.