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Minnesota (18-11) at (16) Michigan (20-7)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, March 1, 6 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Crisler Center (12,707) -- Ann Arbor, Michigan. Television: BTN. Home Record: Minnesota 14-4, Michigan 11-2. Away Record: Minnesota 4-5, Michigan 6-4. Neutral Record: Minnesota 0-2, Michigan 3-1. Conference Record: Minnesota 7-9, Michigan 12-3. Series Record: Michigan leads, 87-65.

GAME NOTES: The 16th-ranked Michigan Wolverines hope to maintain their place atop the Big Ten Conference standings, as they play host to the Minnesota Golden Gophers on Saturday evening.

Minnesota enters the fray having recently notched one of its biggest wins of the season, as the team scored a 95-89 upset of No. 20 Iowa at home. The scoring outburst was the team's highest in a regulation Big Ten bout since 1995. The Golden Gophers had lost six of their previous eight games. At 18-11 overall and 7-9 in conference, Minnesota's first season under head coach Richard Pitino, while far from stellar, has been successful.

Michigan slipped by Purdue on the road this past Wednesday, 77-76 in overtime, to stay a game up on second-place Michigan State in the Big Ten standings. The Wolverines bring a 20-7 overall record and a 12-3 league ledger into this bout with a Minnesota squad they beat in a 63-60 final in the Big Ten opener back on Jan. 2. Michigan controls its own destiny with regard to winning the Big Ten regular-season championship. Including this matchup, coach John Beilein's squad has three games left, the other two being against Illinois and Indiana.

With their win earlier this season, the Wolverines extended their lead in the all-time series with Minnesota to 87-65. Overall, Michigan has won the last five meetings between the two long-time rivals.

Led by a trio of double-digit scorers, Minnesota is putting up 72.2 ppg in hitting 44.6 percent of its field goal attempts, which includes a near-35 percent showing from 3-point range. Andre Hollins (14.8 ppg), DeAndre Mathieu (11.9 ppg, 4.3 apg) and Austin Hollins (11.4 ppg, 5.8 rpg) are all averaging double figures from their spot in the backcourt. The club's defensive effort yields 67.9 ppg, with that figure climbing to 70.3 ppg in conference play. The Gophers lead the league is steals with 221.

Austin Hollins scored a career-high 27 points to help push the Gophers past the visiting Iowa Hawkeyes earlier this week. Mathieu added 19 points to go with seven assists, while Andre Hollins had 14 points and Charles Buggs 13 for Minnesota, which converted a sizzling 61.2 percent of its field goal attempts, draining 11-of-19 3-point tries along the way. A 24-of-29 effort at the free- throw line also played an integral role in the favorable outcome.

Michigan is the third-highest scoring team in the Big Ten this season, netting 75.2 ppg thanks to its league-leading shooting efforts from the field (.477), 3-point range (.389) and the free-throw line (.757). At the other end of the court, the Wolverines rank last in the conference in field goal percentage defense (.438), while allowing 65.4 ppg to rank sixth. Nik Stauskas is averaging 16.9 ppg to head the team and rank sixth in the Big Ten, and he is joined in double figures by Caris LeVert (13.4 ppg, 4.5 rpg) and Glenn Robinson III (13.0 ppg, 4.4 rpg).

Robinson III went 7-of-11 from the field to net 17 points, Stauskas added 15, LeVert 14 and Jordan Morgan 13, all of which Michigan needed as it survived an overtime affair at Purdue earlier in the week. The Wolverines struggled from long range (6-of-23), but took exceptional care of the basketball (seven turnovers). Both teams shot just over 41 percent from the field, and UM got 10 points from its reserves, compared to only two for the home team.

The Gophers are sure to put their best foot forward in an effort to play the role of spoiler, but the Wolverines are on a mission, and they would have to totally lose focus to come up short in this home game with so much riding on the outcome.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Michigan 74, Minnesota 67

03/01 10:24:00 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
CHA 102
DET 78
7:30pm Tonight
FLA
CAR
 
Final
PHI 9
ATL 2
Final
MIN 4
BOS 4
Final
HOU 3
DET 2
Final
NYY 0
TAM 3
Final
BOS 7
TOR 9
Final
MIA 8
WAS 0
Final
NYM 4
STL 5
Final
OAK 4
ANA 1
Final
KAN 4
LOS 4
Final
CIN 0
ARI 3
Final
SEA 4
CWS 12
Final
SFG 5
CLE 2
Final
CHC 11
MIL 7
Final
CWS 2
SDP 8
Final
COL 10
TEX 4
Final
BAL 3
PIT 3
12:05pm Today
STL
NYM
 
1:05pm Today
DET
NYY
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
PIT
 
1:05pm Today
PHI
TAM
 
3:05pm Today
CIN
CLE
 
3:05pm Today
SDP
MIL
 
3:10pm Today
ARI
CWS
 
6:05pm Tonight
ATL
BAL
 
7:05pm Tonight
MIN
BOS
 
7:05pm Tonight
CCH
HOU
 
10:05pm Tonight
ANA
LOS
 
10:15pm Tonight
SFG
OAK
 
Final
CHA 102
DET 78
Final
WAS 106
PHI 93
Final
ORL 91
SAN 103
Final
NYK 98
BRK 100
Final
BOS 100
IND 87
Final
MIL 95
CHI 91
Final
OKC 131
DAL 135
Final
HOU 115
SAC 111
Final
MIN 99
TOR 113
Final
UTA 98
DEN 84
4th
POR 113
LAC 122
 
4th
LAL 82
NOP 101
 
8:00pm Tonight
CLE
MIA
 
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
HOU
 
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
PHO
 
Final
LAMON 62
LOYC 63
7:00pm Tonight
EVAN
NARZ
 
9:00pm Tonight
MIAMI
STAN
 
Final
BUF 4
TOR 3
Final
PIT 1
PHI 4
3rd
ANA 5
EDM 1
 
2nd Intermission
SJS 1
COL 0
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLB
NYI
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
BOS
 
7:30pm Tonight
FLA
CAR
 
7:30pm Tonight
OTT
TAM
 
7:30pm Tonight
MON
WAS
 
8:00pm Tonight
STL
CAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
NYR
 
8:30pm Tonight
CHI
VAN
 
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
EDM