Michigan Basketball Likely to Miss NCAA Tournament After Loss to Rutgers
The Michigan basketball team’s chances of competing in this year’s NCAA tournament may have ended abruptly on Thursday after a 62-50 loss to Rutgers in the second round of the Big Ten tournament.
Following the defeat, Michigan’s season record stands at 17-15, and they were already considered among the “First Four Out” candidates for the NCAA tournament before the game.
Michigan had a 28-25 lead at halftime in the game, but the team struggled in the second half.
During the opening 19 minutes of the second half, the team only scored one field goal and finished the game with a season-low of 4-for-21 shooting.
Additionally, they lost the rebounding battle, let the free-throw shooter make a layup after a miss, and generally looked outclassed by their opponents.
Michigan beat Rutgers 58-45 on the road on February 23.
The Wolverines finished the season with 3 wins and 12 losses against Quad I opponents and appear set to be left out of the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2015.
Many people criticized coach Juwan Howard after the game.
Although Michigan made a Sweet 16 run in 2022 to finish with a record of 19-15, their record over the past two seasons is just 36-30.
With the current season’s scale tipping toward the side of failure for the Wolverines, it is possible that Howard’s position as head coach will come under scrutiny.
The final score was 62-50 in favor of Rutgers.
Michigan center Hunter Dickinson was the lone standout player, scoring 24 points while the rest of the team struggled to amass 26 points.