Michigan wants to use more two-big lineups vs. Ohio State, Jon Horford should be available
ANN ARBOR --
Ohio State 18, Michigan 6
Five turnovers already for Michigan. The Buckeyes run extended to 16-0 before a Glenn Robinson III triple finally stopped it. Michigan in deep stuff here early. Wolverines look like a mess at both ends of the floor.
Ohio State 13, Michigan 3
-- 13:51, first half
Not the start you wanted if you're Michigan -- the Wolverines a serious mess in the halfcourt, now 1 of 7 from the field. The Buckeyes have scored 13 straight points. And Aaron Craft -- of all people, has 7 of them.
Ohio State 9, Michigan 3
-- 15:20, first half
Michigan misses five straight shots and commits two turnovers. Ohio State is slowing the game down here, and uses a 9-0 run to take the early advantage here in Columbus. Michigan 1 of 5 from the floor to start, Ohio State 4 of 8. Mitch McGary checks in for Jordan Morgan.
• Michigan starters same as usual: Trey Burke, Tim Hardaway Jr., Nik Stauskas, Glenn Robinson III and Jordan Morgan.
Traditionally, John Beilein's Michigan teams have had a tough time rebounding against rugged Big Ten opponents.
More specifically, Beilein's Wolverines have had a terrible time rebounding against Ohio State.
During his time at Michigan, Beilein has faced the Buckeyes a total of 13 times, going 3-10. In 10 of those meetings, Michigan lost the rebounding battle.
Rebounding hasn't always been the answer for Michigan against Ohio State, as the Wolverines were actually out-boarded by nine in a win at home last season. But it has been a large part of the conversation, as the Wolverines have rarely had the athletes capable of hanging with the Buckeyes inside.
"Where they have, traditionally, hurt us is second-chance points," said Beilein, whose team will look to start the season 17-0 this afternoon when the Wolverines visit Ohio State (1:30 p.m., CBS). "Second-chance points, box out, all (of those) are things we have to learn to do."
In the past, against teams like Ohio State and Michigan State, Beilein's clubs would have to figure out a way to win the game knowing that they'd likely be out-manned on the glass.
This year, though, that story seems different.
Michigan is actually third in the Big Ten in rebounding margin this season at a plus-9.9. The Wolverines average 38.4 rebounds per game -- Ohio State averages 38.9.
And, currently, opponents are grabbing just 28.5 boards per game against Michigan -- the best number in the Big Ten.
"We've been really good with that so far," Beilein said. "We've had a good stat with our defensive rebounding percentage. We need to have that stat again."
Beilein hasn't used too many two-post lineups this season, but Sunday at Ohio State, he says that might change.
Michigan could used both Jordan Morgan (6-foot-8, 240 pounds) and Mitch McGary (6-foot-10, 260 pounds) at the same time. Or, sprinkle in sophomore Jon Horford (6-foot-10, 250 pounds), who should be available to play after missing the past five games with a knee injury.
"I'd like to play both (Morgan and McGary together) more, and in this particular situation, we may have to," Beilein said. "And with Jon's health, he should be able to go, we're going to throw him in there.
"So that could help us as well."
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