Michigan was successful in its first test in showing it can overcome the loss of a key player.
And now the Wolverines hope that trend continues Saturday when they return from a nine-day layoff to face Lipscomb in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Before a game at Minnesota on Dec. 8, Michigan learned that starting point guard Jaelin Llewellyn, a transfer from Princeton, would miss the rest of the season after he suffered a torn ACL against Kentucky on Dec. 4 in London.
Not particularly deep in the backcourt to begin with, the Wolverines (6-3) will be even younger and thinner there for the rest of the season, but that sure didn’t show in a 90-75 rout of the Golden Gophers.
True freshman Dug McDaniel provided 15 points and seven assists in his first start and 10 different players scored for the Wolverines in an impressive performance.
“They mustered up some energy because they are competitors,” Michigan coach Juwan Howard told The Michigan Daily. “Just being competitors, they were locked in and focused knowing how important this game was.”
After the break, Michigan restarts its schedule against a Libscomb (7-4) team that earned a 64-63 home win over Tennessee Tech on Wednesday.
“It will be a tremendous test,” Bisons coach Lennie Acuff said after the narrow win over the Golden Eagles. “Our guys are excited.”
Lipscomb has size up front in 6-foot-7 sophomore Jacob Ognacevic, who leads the team in scoring at 16.9 points per game, and 6-foot-10 senior Ahsan Asadullah, who had 21 points and 15 rebounds against Tennessee Tech.
Those two players will need to play well to combat Michigan center and All-American candidate Hunter Dickinson, who is averaging 19.6 points and 8.6 rebounds a game.
The Wolverines also have gotten good production out of freshman Jett Howard, who is averaging 15.1 points a game.
This will be the first meeting between Michigan of the Big Ten and Lipscomb of the Atlantic Sun.
–Field Level Media