Men's Basketball

Senior guard Zavier Simpson is shooting 37 percent on 3-pointers this season, up from 28.5 percent in his career.

Simpson — assuredly not known for his shooting prowess — has been trapped between the decision to take the open 3-point shot or carry on with one of many other options that he is more comfortable with, including driving to the hoop or finding another open man. But in an unexpected development, the veteran guard has added an effective 3-point shot to his arsenal, elevating the Wolverines’ offense. The senior made this addition even more apparent on Wednesday, when he hit two threes in the opening four minutes to ignite Michigan’s offense in its eventual 60-52 win over Rutgers.


Leading up to Wednesday, Castleton had played just five minutes over the Wolverines’ last three games. But when Michigan needed a second-half spark against Rutgers, coach Juwan Howard called his number. Castleton delivered a timely and-one layup and a much-needed defensive presence, propelling the Wolverines to a 60-52 victory.


The process of breaking that standoff wasn’t pretty, but even without leading scorer, Isaiah Livers, the Michigan men’s basketball team (17-9 overall, 8-7 Big Ten) held on to beat Rutgers (18-9, 9-7), 60-52, undaunted in a hostile environment.

Junior guard Eli Brooks has helped lead Michigan's late-season surge.

Since Michigan’s victory over Nebraska and Isaiah Livers’ return, the Wolverines have been on a tear — reminiscent of its early season success.

Senior point guard Zavier Simpson scored 12 points and added 11 assists in Sunday’s  89-65 win over Indiana.

Zavier Simpson took the ball up the court to kick things off against Indiana on Sunday. But, fairly uncharacteristically, Simpson attempted to find his man on the right side only to see the ball land squarely in the hands of a Hoosier. Rather than follow up Indiana’s opening bucket with a couple points of his own, Simpson was staring down a turnover and a less-than-ideal start. But that would be one of his only mistakes all afternoon.


Jon Teske might’ve just missed a point-blank layup attempt, but he wasn’t going to give up on the play. As the rebound evaded the grasp of the Hoosiers, the senior center dove on it and had the wherewithal to find Franz Wagner alone under the basket for two. Teske’s effort, apart from sending the Crisler Center crowd into an uproar, capped off an offensive onslaught that saw his team take a 12-point lead on Indiana late in the first half. From there, the Michigan men’s basketball team (16-9 overall, 7-7 Big Ten) held serve to beat the Hoosiers (16-9, 6-8), 89-65, Sunday afternoon.

Eli Brooks has led Michigan in scoring in its last three road games.

On Wednesday, following a blowout win over Northwestern, junior forward Isaiah Livers was asked to describe junior guard Eli Brooks — the game’s leading scorer. Instead of diving into the minutiae of the guard’s performance, Livers kicked things off by giving the third-year player a new nickname:

“The silent assassin.”

Senior center Austin Davis scored nine points in Wednesday night's win.

In the midst of a breakout senior season, center Austin Davis’ dunk injected a jolt of life into a half-empty Welsh-Ryan Arena when the Wolverines needed it most. The dunk ignited an 8-0 spurt for the Wolverines — one that eventually became a 27-5 run, propelling Michigan to a 79-54 victory.

Junior forward Isaiah Livers combined with Eli Brooks for 35 points against Northwestern on Wednesday night.

Forward Isaiah Livers and shooting guard Eli Brooks combined for 35 points, 10 rebounds and a fair number of electrifying shots, helping Michigan to a 79-54 win.

Michigan topped Northwestern, 79-54, on Wednesday night.

And after a rough start, the Wolverines (15-9 overall, 6-7 Big Ten) thoroughly dismantled the Wildcats (6-17, 1-12) to the tune of 79-54.
Michigan started the game badly, going 0-for-11 from the floor with seven of those shots registering as either layups or dunks. Most of the offensive stagnancy fell directly on the shoulders of senior center Jon Teske who struggled around the rim, missing easy looks against a drastically undersized Northwestern team.