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Open shots lead to 3-point shooting frenzy for Michigan in blowout over Purdue

The Wolverines shot 57% from behind the arc last night.

NCAA Basketball: Purdue at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

On just one day rest, and right after shooting 24% from beyond the arc on Tuesday against Penn State, the Michigan Wolverines exploded for 12 three-pointers in a 82-58 drubbing of the Purdue Boilermakers. Michigan shot 57.1% from three-point land in the victory.

The only time Michigan made more threes in one game this season was against Nebraska on Dec. 7, when the Wolverines hit 15 of them. But from a combination of made three-pointers (12) three-point field goal percentage (57.1%), who the opponent was and how important this game was, you could argue this was the best three-point shooting performance of the year.

“People were finding me in good spots,” Brooks said after the game. “Got open looks, and it felt good today.”

Brooks had two points at the break before his four three-pointers in the second half helped grow his total to 18 points. He, true freshman Caleb Houstan and sophomore Hunter Dickinson each contributed four three-pointers in this game.

Michigan expected this kind of shooting from Brooks and Houstan coming into the season. The surprise this year has been the big man Hunter Dickinson being a threat from deep. He did not make a single three-pointer last season, but now shoots it consistently at a 37% clip.

“Yes, and I also expected a guy who has worked extremely hard this summer to add more to his game,” Juwan Howard said with a chuckle when asked if he expected this from Dickinson coming into the season. “A lot has been talked about ‘can we see Hunter shooting the ball from the outside?’ ‘Can he shoot from the outside?’ Like I shared with you guys early in the year, think about it, the guys that he played with last year, four of them are in the NBA. They all were great shooters from the outside. Austin (Davis) and Hunter sacrificed a lot, particularly Hunter. They played inside, and he took advantage of one-on-ones, because there were times when teams didn’t want to help. So this year, we worked a lot on outside shooting. I knew he could shoot the ball, he shot it in high school. He’s put in the work, and every time he shoots it I feel like it’s going in.”

When Dickinson is up against larger opponents like he was against Zach Edey and Purdue, there aren’t as many opportunities down low. He is now able to step outside and still be a force in the game with his shooting ability.

The Wolverines are going to be a very tough team to beat if they can keep shooting it from downtown like they did against Purdue. Let’s hope the hot hands return on Saturday as the Ohio State Buckeyes come to Ann Arbor for the first ever Blue Out at the Crisler Center.