And then there were two.
After Houston’s upset loss against Temple, the Wolverines are one of two undefeated teams left in the country next to Virginia. They’re also the only the one to never lose to a 16-seed in the NCAA tournament.
Michigan travels to Champaign tonight for another conference bout against the Illinois Fighting Illini. The Illini are currently in free-fall having lost four straight, though you could argue they’ve played two of their better games of the season recently against Northwestern and Indiana. They were tied versus the Hoosiers and held a six-point lead against the Wildcats at the half. Poor second half efforts unfortunately buried them in both.
A balanced team, the Illini have three scorers averaging double figures and an additional two putting up more than eight points per game. Trent Frazier, Ayo Dosunmu, and Aaron Jordan all shoot above 39% from three so the Wolverines defense needs to stay on their toes, prepared to chase shooters off the line all night.
A major problem for Illinois has been getting their stars on the same page. Frazier dropped 29 and 28 against Gonzaga and Missouri respectively. Dosunmu was only able to muster six and two points in those two contests.
On the flip side, while Dosunmu put in 25 and 20 against Georgetown and Indiana, Frazier didn’t play against the Hoyas and only mustered 11 points on 13 shots in Bloomington.
Illinois hasn’t allowed more than 80 points in a game since mid-November, indicating a sharp defensive uptick after allowing 80+ in four straight games earlier in that month.
How To Watch:
Teams: No. 2 Michigan Wolverines (15-0) vs. Illinois Fighting Illini (4-11)
Date: Thursday, Jan. 10
Location: State Farm Center — Champaign, Illinois
Tipoff: 8:00 ET
Television: FS1 (FoxSportsGo link here)