Who: #22/21 Indiana Hoosiers (18-4, 8-1 Big Ten)
When: Tuesday, February 2nd, at 9:00 p.m. ET (ESPN)
Where: Crisler Center -- Ann Arbor, Mich.
This is the start of a six-game stretch during which Michigan faces four ranked teams and will reveal just how good this team is. If Michigan wants to be a legitimate Big Ten title contender and a team that doesn't flirt with the bubble in mid-March, it must defend its home court against teams of an equivalent caliber. That is the task that the Wolverines have tonight as #22 Indiana (18-4, 8-1 Big Ten) rolls into town. The Hoosiers have benefited from a weak schedule, but they have a potent offense led by one of the nation's best point guards in Yogi Ferrell and a promising young center in Thomas Bryant and an improving defense. Nonetheless, Indiana seems to be a much different team on the road rather than in Assembly Hall, and I think that will be the main difference tonight:
The venue truly will be the deciding factor. I've watched enough of both of these schools to know that it takes a great team to beat the Wolverines in Ann Arbor and that the Hoosiers are not road warriors. If this game was played in Assembly Hall or even at a neutral site, I'd probably favor Indiana. But, because there is just something different about Indiana when it enters a hostile environment, I think the home crowd will rally Michigan to an important win, unless the Hoosiers just light it up from downtown.
Michigan 76, Indiana 71
Here is my in-depth game preview if you want to learn more about Indiana.
Here is my Q&A with The Crimson Quarry's Kyle Robbins for Indiana's perspective.
What do you think? Does Michigan beat Indiana? Why or why not?