The No. 11 Michigan Wolverines (21-7, 11-4) and Purdue Boilermakers (18-10, 8-7) both have plenty to play for when they meet in Crisler Arena on Saturday evening.
Michigan has won four consecutive Big Ten games and a win over Purdue on Saturday gives the Wolverines a chance to finish the conference schedule without another loss which keeps them in the mix for a regular-season conference title. The Wolverines showed the resolve of a champion in their last win at Northwestern, holding off a spirited effort from the Wildcats in a hostile road environment to pull out a double-digit win overtime.
Michigan faces another team looking to bolster their NCAA tournament case in Purdue, as a solid road win over Michigan would all but seal up a tournament bid for the Boilermakers who have had to endure an up and down season. The Boilermakers have won three of their last four games and appeared to be over the off-court issues that threatened to derail the season last week with a strong effort in cruising past Nebraska on Wednesday.
Purdue lives and dies by their perimeter shooting, so Michigan will need to keep tabs on D.J. Byrd and Ryne Smith behind the arc to minimize the support for leading scorer Robbie Hummel. The Wolverines should get boost from Senior Night as Stu Douglass and Zack Novak play their game at Crisler Arena.
The game is scheduled to tip at 6:00 p.m. ET and will be televised on the Big Ten Network.
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