Life on the road can be tough in college basketball, and it hasn’t been kind to the Michigan Wolverines so far this year. Michigan is 1-4 in true road games this season, with the lone victory coming against Nebraska, a team with no Big Ten wins and sitting in last place.
Things aren’t going to come easy on Sunday as the Wolverines head to Bloomington to take on the Indiana Hoosiers, who just knocked off No. 4 Purdue on Thursday. Indiana is currently 14-4 and 5-3 in Big Ten play. Michigan has zero quad one wins, so a victory on Sunday would be a huge step toward building an NCAA Tournament resume. It’ll be tough to do against a team that leads the Big Ten in scoring defense and is third in the nation in opponent field goal percentage.
“Coach Woodson is doing an excellent job of having their wings really get into guys and picking up full court, and really trying to make catches on the wing tough,” Michigan assistant coach Howard Eisley told the media on Friday morning. “They have two guys inside that really do a great job of defending the post and are great rebounders, so they limit teams to one shot at the basket.”
Another challenging aspect of the game is the hostile road environment Michigan will see in Assembly Hall. The stadium will be packed and loud, and this young team doesn’t have a ton of experience in settings like the one they’ll see on Sunday.
“I think it’s cool, to be honest,” Caleb Houstan said in regards to playing on the road. “I think everyone we’ve played so far, their fans really support their team. It’s kind of like a different environment, playing away, but yeah I think it’s cool trying to go get a dub on the road. It’s kind of like a hostile environment and you’ve just got the staff and the team, 20 or so guys trying to go in with thousands of people cheering against you. So I think it’s real cool and real fun to be able to compete in that environment.”
We’ll see if Michigan is up for the big challenge ahead on Sunday. Michigan vs Indiana tips at 3 p.m. on CBS.