Michigan's Jon Horford returns to the rotation, could finally be rounding back into shape
The 6-foot-10, 250-pound Horford was still finding his way back into shape after suffering a knee injury against West Virginia last month, and seemed to be stuck behind redshirt freshman Max Bielfeldt.
Until the game started.
"How about Jon's eight minutes (Thursday), they were exceptional," said Beilein, whose second-ranked Wolverines will visit Illinois on Sunday (6 p.m., BTN). "Jon the last couple days in practice has been very good.
"Maybe there's more (minutes for him) down the stretch."
Horford pulled down three rebounds and scored on a tip-in -- his first points in more than a month -- in his eight minutes against the Boilermakers, a team that stood as the top offensive rebounding club in the league prior to the game.
Before his injury, Horford was routinely seeing minutes off the bench as the team's third big man -- behind Jordan Morgan and Mitch McGary.
One of the team's most improved post defenders and shot blockers, a healthy Horford could give Michigan a completely different look off the bench throughout the remainder of conference play.
If he stays healthy, that is.
"He was injured for five or six weeks to start the season, and then injured again," Beilein said. "It's been really difficult for him. You can drill like crazy, but when you're going full court and you have to make quick decisions and playing at a level like we are, we have to be careful.
"No. 1, that he doesn't lose confidence. No. 2, that the team prospers when he's in there. And we were very good when he was in there (vs. Purdue)."
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