NCAA Tournament Contender Preview: Michigan Wolverines

Conference: Big Ten
Top 25 Ranking: #7

Season Averages:
Offense: 76.2 points per game, 49.3 field-goal percentage, 14.8 assists
Defense: 61.4 points per game, 41.7 field-goal percentage, 12.6 assists (allowed)

Analysis: As efficient as the Wolverines are offensively, ranking 3rd nationally, Michigan is almost as bad defensively. They aren't poor by many metrics, but none of the last 10 national champions have ranked outside the Top 20 in overall defensive efficiency. This team is 87th.

        When they need a stop, can they get one? They do not have a rim-protector on the back line or a lock-down perimeter defender, which is certainly the weak link preventing Michigan from a potential deep March run.

        But Michigan makes up this lack of defensive stopping with intangibles. Trey Burke is the best point guard and floor general in the country, possessing the unique ability to set up teammates and hit shots in the clutch. Led by Burke, Michigan is second in the country in assist-to-turnover ratio, 1.57-to-1. But again, pointing back to defense, they rank in the bottom-third of teams in defensive assist-to-turnover, allowing 1.03 assists-to-1 turnover.

By Staff Writer - 2 - 27- 13