Michigan is getting ready for life in the D-League.

John Becic
Michigan guard Daniel Horton makes a pass against Michigan Tech last week. The Wolverines host the Fayetteville Patriots tonight in their exhibition finale.

The Fayetteville Patriots of the National Development Basketball
League — the NBA’s minor league — will be coming
into Crisler Arena tonight as part of the league’s
“Going Back to School” Tour. The exhibition will be the
last tune up for the Wolverines before their season opener next
Friday against Oakland.

The game will give Michigan a rare opportunity to go against
players that have starred in college and/or have played

“It’s something new,” sophomore guard Daniel
Horton said. “It’s different than going to the rec, or
going to a local high school and go against all the pro players
from your area.”

After watching the Harlem Globetrotters take on Syracuse on
Tuesday night, coach Tommy Amaker realized that playing
professional players will be a challenge.

“They’re older guys,” Amaker said.
“They’re crafty, they’re stronger, they’re
savvy basketball players. We’re looking forward to that type
of experience.”

A few of the Patriots have made a name for themselves recently
on the college stage. Forward Sam Clancy is the third-highest
scorer in Southern Cal. history. Guard Kueth Duany started every
game on Syracuse’s national championship team last season.
Former Georgia Tech star center Jason Collier has played for the
Houston Rockets the last three seasons. Guard Omar Cook was a
McDonalds All-American and played for St. John’s.

“We can’t come out slow like we did against Michigan
Tech,” sophomore forward Lester Abram said. “We know
they aren’t going to lay down for us.”

Senior forward Bernard Robinson should return to the lineup, and
high-flying freshman Brent Petway should make his Michigan debut
after dressing but not playing against Michigan Tech. Both sat out
last weekend with nagging injuries.

One player who still hasn’t gotten back to practice is
center Graham Brown. The sophomore sprained his ankle in practice
early last week.

“We’re just taking it day by day,” Brown said.
“It’s not progressing very fast, so we’re just
working really hard to get it ready.”






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