Saturday, for the second straight game, the Michigan men”s basketball team was victimized by an opponent”s perimeter shooting. Much like Michigan State, Wisconsin used multiple screens to make room for its shooters.

Last Tuesday, the Spartans took advantage of open looks around the arc, shooting 7-for-16 on 3-pointers.

Saturday, the Badgers did much of the same, wearing down the Wolverines with screens to free up sharp-shooting sophomore Kirk Penney.

Penney, who entered the game averaging only 9.4 points per game, lit up the Wolverines for 23 points, one short of his career high.

The guard took advantage of a number of open looks thanks to series of three to four screens to shoot 4-of-9 from beyond the arc.

“I can”t tell you how many times Penney came off a screen and was wide open,” Michigan forward Chris Young said. “That”s not just on the guy guarding him though. That”s also on the post for not sitting there and hedging for long enough to keep him from getting the ball.”

Fresh man: Redshirt freshman quarterback Jermaine Gonzales saw his first action the basketball court for Michigan on Saturday.

Playing on the wing, Gonzales missed his only shot, a 3-pointer, in three minutes of action at the end of the game.

The freshman only started practicing with the team a week and a half ago but Michigan coach Brian Ellerbe hopes that the Wolverines can take advantage of his athleticism on defense.

“It”s a transition from high school to college. You”ve got bigger, stronger, faster athletes,” Gonzales said. “It”s a big difference.”

Act II: Halftime of Saturday”s game saw the return of the ever-popular “mascot basketball” to Crisler Arena. Competing mascots from across the state and the country included favorites like Big Boy, who lost his head, and the Bell Tire guy along with newcomers like Shooter the Whale of the IHL Plymouth Whalers.

The Corporate Team led by Media Play mascots Lowell and Media Man who looks like a robot with a book for a head defeated Slappy the K-Wing and his team of Phi Slamma Jamma, 8-2.

Rocko, from the Detroit Rockers indoor soccer team, stole the show. The energetic mascot, who looked like an overgrown version of Animal from the Muppets, regularly tackled members of the other team, picked a fight with and beat up the Bank One mascot and threw the game ball into the Maize Rage.

The game was marred by violence, as several mascots lost portions of their costume in frays for the ball. The Trix Rabbit lost his ears and one of his feet and the Hostess Twinkie lost his hat.

The difference in the game may have come when the Bell Tire guy lost the top of his head, allowing the Corporate team to stall the game by stuffing the ball into his costume.

Media Man led all scorers with four points.

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