The final score was 59-55, but it felt much worse than that. Minnesota only connected on 5 of 16 free throws in the final minute.
Let's just point out a few things about this game:
Team Stat Comparison
Points 59 55
FG Made-Attempted 21-51 (.412) 21-56 (.375)
3P Made-Attempted 2-10 (.200) 4-22 (.182)
FT Made-Attempted 15-28 (.536) 9-13 (.692)
Shoot 36.5% while 18% from downtown (missing 18). This is hilarious: Michigan redshirt junior guard Lester Abram felt the reason the Wolverines lost Thursday to Minnesota was because of selfish play. You think?
Where was the heart in a all-or-nothing game? For that matter, where was the effort Saturday against a struggling Indiana team in their last home game of the season? Michigan (18-10) is considered on the bubble for an NCAA Tournament slot. The Wolverines entered the game ranked 37th in the Ratings Percentage Index, making them a possible at-large entry. Michigan has lost seven of its last nine games, a problem since the tournament selection committee traditionally weighs recent history heavily.
Michigan not making the tournament is disgraceful and shows how much they underacheived this year. Instead, teams like Belmont, Oral Roberts, Monmouth, Winthrop, and Delaware State will be in because they won games when it mattered most. I don't know what the fate of Tommy Amaker is but the focus of the Michigan basketball program is not there.
Football will always be number one at the University of Michigan, but there is no reason that Michigan does not compete each and every year in basketball. Maybe it's the recruiting, maybe the funding, maybe the coaching, or maybe it is simply the players. Whatever the "excuses" the potential was there this year and now this year looks to be ending with an NIT invitation.
Just how "bubbly" are the Wolverines?
(for comparison, our RPI is now #46):
2004:In the top 42, only #38 LSU did not get in. Why? They were 18-10 and 8-8 conference (sound familiar?) They finished 4-6 in the last 10.Then #43 Utah State did not get in. Probably got screwed with an 8-2 finish and 24-3 record.Then 44-47 all made it in. The only other at larges were #60 Washington and #70 Air Force.An interesting tidbit is that South Carolina DID make it at #45 from the SEC while #38 LSU did not. Both were 8-8 league and both finished 4-6. South Carolina was 23-10 overall vs LSU's 18-10 but again LSU had the better rpi. A key factor may have been that in the opener of the SEC tourney, SCarolina blew out LSU by 21.
2005: The top 42 all made it.#43 Miami of Ohio did not make it and may have gotten screwed but finished 5-5 and were 6-10 in road/neutral games.#44 Creighton got an auto bid and then #45-46 Wichita State and Buffalo did not make it. WSU was 0-9 but finished 4-6. Buffalo got screwed with their 8-2 finish and 10-7 road/neutral mark. However, they were only 1-5 vs the top 50.#47-50 made it in but 3 were auto bids and #49 UAB was an atlarge. UAB finished 5-5 but had a 10-7 road/neutral record. However they were 0-5 vs. the top 50 but 7-1 vs the 51-100 group.The only other atlarge bids were strange ones with Iowa State getting in at 63 and NC State at 65. ISU finished 7-3 but had a 5-6 record (not bad) against the top 50. NCState finished 6-4 but so did #61 Indiana, who was left out.