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March 11, 2013 - Image 9

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The Michigan Daily, 2013-03-11

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U The Michigan Daily I michigandaily.com I March 11, 2013

The dichotomy of
Michigan's senior day

Michigan manhandled on
the glass in loss to Indiana

t was senior day inside
Crisler Center on Sunday.
Five Wolverines strolled
onto the floor and were honored
for "being the building blocks of
the recent success of the Michi-
gan basketball program."
So Josh Bartelstein; Corey
Person, Eso Akunne, Blake
McLimans and Matt Vogrich
stood at
half court,
received
applause
from the
crowd and
returned to
their team-
mates.
This was EVERETT
all normal. COOK
Senior days
happen at
every program in the country.
The weird part was that the
seniors' moment, sentiment and
applause ended as soon as the
game started.
On Sunday, the dichotomy of
this Michigan team was in full
effect. The day started with a
ceremony featuring five seniors
and ended with two juniors, a
sophomore and two freshmen on
the floor watching Indiana cel-
ebrate an outright Big Ten title.
Not a single senior scored
against Indiana. Vogrich, in a
rare sighting, played five min-
utes - the most he's played since

December. McLimans, in an
even rarer sighting, played for
the first time since early Febru-
ary.
Before Sunday, the five Wol-
verine seniors were all starters
- on the scout team. They are
also the five players that average
the least amount of minutes per
game, and there are five fresh-
men that average more minutes
per game than these five seniors,
the men honored on Sunday.
This has been ateam carried
by underclassmen all season.
That's not new.
And by all accounts, Bartel-
stein, the captain, and Person,
the Wolverine named by the
younger players as the vocal
senior, are great leaders. They
always jump off the bench dur-
ing timeouts, are always coach-
ing from the sideline and seem to
have a good grasp of the lessons
taught by Michigan coach John
Beilein.
But Person and Bartelstein
have played 26 combined min-
utes this season. Bartelstein
hasn't scored a point, and Person
has just 11. They could be the
best leaders in the world, but it
doesn't mean as much when they
never see the floor. Person is
vocal, but if he isn't on the court,
how much can he really teach
Michigan's young core?
In terms of in-game experi-
ence, what can those two guys,

and the rest of the seniors, bring
to Michigan's underclassmen?
There are some games when
it's clear this team is lacking an
experienced senior leader, a true
veteran who has been there -
playing - in tough situations.
With less than a minute left
against the Hoosiers, Michigan
was up four and got fouled.
Three missed free throws
later, Indiana claimed the lead
for good. Freshman forward
Glenn Robinson III, junior for-
ward Tim Hardaway Jr. and
sophomore point guard Trey
Burke all went to the line, and
given an opportunityto seal the
game, all three of them whiffed.
Would having a senior on
the floor, someone who had
made big shots in the past, have
helped? Who knows. Impossible
to predict.
But who's to say that some-
one who had been there before,
someone with multiple years of
experience playing in big situa-
tions, wouldn't have been able to
help calm Michigan down when
it fell apart at Michigan State
- an insane environment - in
February?
Who's to say that Michigan
couldn't have used that experi-
enced senior leader on the road
at Penn State, when they lost to
a vastly inferior Nittany Lion
team?
See SENIOR DAY, Page 3B

Zeller, Oladipo siers to take bad shots and miss
easy layups in its best defensive
outrebound effort of the conference season.
But it was the second- and third-
Michigan frontcourt chance opportunities thattcaused
the seventh-ranked Wolverines'
By COLLEEN THOMAS demise in their chance to secure
Daily Sports Editor a second consecutive Big Ten
Championship.
During Sunday's game against Michigan was manhandled
No. 2 Indiana, the Michigan on the glass, outrebounded by
men's basketball team did an the Hoosiers 53-30, and gave up
excellent job of forcing the Hoo- 17 second-chance points to Indi-

ana off an absurd 24 offensive
rebounds.
"(Indiana) crashed three or
four guys and somebody always
seemed to be missing some-
one," said Michigan coach John
Beilein. "Rebounding was a
huge, huge part of this game. It's
a shame when we defend so well,
and they walk in and get a layup
after. It happened over and over
again, but as a coachingstaff and
See BOARDS, Page 3B

PLAYERS OF THE YEAR? ?

TERRA MOLENGRAFF/Daily
Sophomore guard Trey Burke tries to inbound past Indiana junior guard Victor Oladipo during the game on Sunday.

BIG EXIT
After a win in the opening round of the
Big Ten Tournament against Indiana, the
Michigan women's basketball team lost in
the quarterfinals to the Spartans. Page 2B

STAYING ALIVE
The Michigan hockey team stayed hot,
collecting its fifth and sixth straight wins
with a sweep over Northern Michigan in the
CCHA Tournament first round. Page 4B

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