Let me start out by saying I love the chemistry on this team. These guys are really functioning as a unit on the court. They are playing hard and they are playing together. Coach Beilein said you can beat anybody when you believe in what you are doing. These guys believe.
Michigan had to win this game and preferably in convincing fashion and that is exactly what they did with an 81-49 victory over an outmatched Norfolk State team.
Michigan actually started the game 0-10 from the field and did not score until Stuart Douglass hit a three pointer at the 15:21 mark. Zack Novak provided a huge spark in the first half with 10 points.
Manny Harris continued his incredible start to the season by scoring 16 points, hauling down a career high 15 rebounds, dishing out 4 assists, and picking up a steal.
Anthony Wright started the game 0-5 but finished 4-5 good for 12 points and he had 5 rebounds
Michigan was really pushing the tempo especially when Kelvin Grady was in at the point. Grady was playing very fast and under control. Grady only scored 3 points but had 5 assists against 2 turnovers.
Coach John Beilein said in the post game that Michigan’s offensive transition game was “exceptional tonight”. He said he wants to run on every rebound and every turnover at full speed, just go.
He also mentioned that Manny Harris had 10 defensive rebounds and “that is the greatest face break you can have because everyone has to go at his (Harris’) speed, which is very fast”.
The Wolverines had some very good ball movement as they played very unselfish basketball. They really seem to be coming together as a team and that great chemistry that Coach Beilein said this team has is becoming very apparent.
On Laval Lucas-Perry: He said that Lucas-Perry has a unique ability to separate and he said “this guy gets it”. He also said that LLP will be the best point guard Michigan has had since Rumeal Robinson.
On Zack Novak: Novak understands the offense at the level of a junior or senior.
On Manny Harris: Manny reminds him of former Michigan great Mike McGee. He also said Manny is the best scorer in the Big Ten and that he can score in many different ways.
McCormick also said what I have heard several other basketball people say about Michigan, “they play hard”.
Inside the numbers: After starting the game 0-10 Michigan shot 32-61 good for 54% from the field. The Wolverines had 21 assists on 32 made field goals. Michigan had 14 turnovers, 7 steals, and 5 blocked shots. Michigan did out rebound the Spartans 49-35 and had 16 offensive rebounds. Michigan was 9-27 on three pointers and had 6 different players make a three pointer.
Zack Gibson tweaked his back in the first half and did not return.