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NCAA Tournament Game Thread: Michigan (3) vs Houston (6)

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The rust is off and it’s time to focus

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-First Round-Michigan vs Montana Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday night was ugly, but a double-digit win is a double-digit win. And after arguably the worst five minutes of Michigan’s season, the Wolverines dominated the Montana Grizzlies the rest of the way.

The stars didn’t play particularly well last night, the defense was spotty early, yet Michigan still rolled. I think this says a lot about where this team is at right now — high floor, high ceiling. Translation — a very good team.

As Kyle sent out to the staff the other night: “There’s not much to take away from this performance other than let’s move on.”

So let’s move on to Houston.

Game Info

Teams: Michigan Wolverines (29-7) vs. Houston Cougars (27-7)

Date: Saturday, March 17, 2018 (Happy St. Patrick’s Day)

Location: Wichita, Kansas

Tip-off: 9:40 p.m. EST — Keep in mind that tournament games, particularly late ones, can get thrown off. For example, Thursday’s tip was pushed back about 30 minutes.

Television: TBS

Today’s Question:

Is Zavier Simpson ready for the defensive performance of his life?

Houston’s Rob Gray dropped 39 points on San Diego State Thursday night and hit the game-winner. He can score from literally anywhere and will be the key to Houston hanging with the Wolverines.

Montana’s guards were able to get into the lane early, but Michigan adjusted well and kept them in check for the final three-quarters of the game. Gray, however, is a different animal and will shoot from anywhere at any time. Simpson is one of the best — if not the best — defensive guards John Beilein has had in Ann Arbor. He led the team’s effort to hold Carsen Edwards to 12 points on 16 shots in the Big Ten Championship Game. He’ll face a similar test tonight.

Go Blue!