Men's Basketball

The Michigan men’s basketball team and its Tuesday night opponent, Ohio State, have had similar trajectories so far this season.

Rarely though, does the season-long trajectory of two teams nearly mirror itself. Let alone rivals in the same conference.
But, that just so happens to be the case with the Michigan men’s basketball team and its opponent Tuesday: Ohio State.

Michigan left Madison Square Garden with a 69-63 win over Rutgers.

NEW YORK — If this is what a turning point looks like, Michigan will take it.

Senior guard Zavier Simpson returned from a suspension on Saturday.

“At the end of the day, you learn from your lessons because you gotta move forward,” Simpson said. “It’s not about what happens, it’s about how you react from it. Just gotta reflect on things, move forward and try to get out here and get a dub, which we did.”

Brandon Johns scored a career-high 20 points in Michigan's win on Saturday.

NEW YORK – Brandon Johns Jr. is a somewhat unlikely hero for this Michigan team.

On a team that has junior Isaiah Livers at his position, that was always going to be the case, at least until Livers graduated.

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NEW YORK  — In the seven seasons leading up to Saturday, Madison Square Garden has become a home away from home for the Michigan men’s basketball team.

The Michigan basketball program reinstated Zavier Simpson on Friday.

The Michigan men’s basketball team has reinstated senior point guard Zavier Simpson following a one-game suspension, coach Juwan Howard announced on Friday.

“After speaking with (Michigan athletic director) Warde (Manuel) before today’s practice and after my media availability, we agreed to lift Zavier’s suspension,” Howard said in a statement. “I am looking forward to moving on from this. Anything further will continue to be handled within.”

Freshman wing Franz Wagner scored 18 points, tied his season-high with eight rebounds and added three steals in Tuesday’s win over Nebraska.

The freshman wing took a team-high 15 shots in 25 minutes, scored 18 points, tied his season-high with eight rebounds and added three steals.
What’s more important, though, is how he reached that statline. Before Tuesday, more than half of Wagner’s shots against conference opponents came from beyond the arc. Michigan coach Juwan Howard is relentless in encouraging his players to let it go when they’re open, but there also seemed to be times when the 6-foot-9, long-armed Wagner could be taking advantage of matchups in other ways.
Against the Cornhuskers, he was more than a spot-up shooter. And when the Wolverines needed him to do it all, that’s exactly what he did.

Against Nebraska, sophomore forward Brandon Johns Jr. contributed to Michigan's win with efficient shooting.

LINCOLN What do you do when your most comfortable state is upended? When all sense of familiarity is thrown out the window?

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LINCOLN — It was decidedly different from the Michigan lineup that’s shown up most of this season, and decidedly different from the fast-paced, physical style of play that has become a trademark of the Wolverines this season.

Senior guard Zavier Simpson has been suspended for Tuesday's game at Nebraska for a violation of team rules.

While the details of the suspension are still unclear and coach Juwan Howard is keeping the details in-house, Simpson will be sitting out Tuesday’s game at Nebraska. The Wolverines’ identity is crumbling before their very eyes, they’re seemingly losing their composure. But their season isn’t over yet.