The Michigan Wolverines (10-0) kept their perfect season alive after Saturday afternoon’s victory over the South Carolina Gamecocks (4-5). Led by Jordan Poole and Ignas Brazdeikis’s 17 points, Michigan came out with an 89-78 home win.
Jordan Poole Stardom
After a career-high 26 point performance, sophomore guard Jordan Poole has become the go-to scorer for a Michigan team that has been known for their defense. Although Poole started the season on a slow note after his rise to prominence in last year’s NCAA Tournament, it seems like he has regained his swagger. Since scoring 18 points on the national spotlight against North Carolina, he has averaged 20 points per game with a 60% three-point percentage. His emergence has been key for a Wolverines team that doesn’t lack leaders, but at times has shown lack of offensive production. Jordan Poole’s rise to his potential has given playmakers like Charles Matthews and Zavier Simpson a trusted teammate to find and count on to score.
Jon Teske Early Candidate for Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year?
7’1 and 260 pounds. That in itself is the measure of a monster. Jon Teske, junior center out of Medina, Ohio, has given the Wolverines and John Beilein exactly what they had hoped for this season. Teske finished with nine rebounds, three blocks, and added 15 points from the paint. Although he played 29 minutes due to foul trouble, if Teske can remain aggressive without fouling, he will be a force to be reckoned with throughout the Big Ten season. In the last three games, Teske is averaging 13.3 points, nine rebounds, 63.6% field goal percentage, and 66.6% free-throw percentage. As Teske’s numbers get closer to the double-double average, he increases his free-throw percentage, and continues to block shots every game, he will become a scary force in the conference. Look for him to keep gaining composure and confidence as the year goes on.
Isaiah Livers as a Dependable Sixth-Man
Isaiah Livers, a 6’7 sophomore forward, was disappointed not to be named a starter on this year’s Michigan team due to the early rise of Ignas Brazdeikis. Rather than looking down, Livers has risen as a key role player for this year’s team. Coming off the bench, he is averaging 7.2 points and 3.9 rebounds through ten games. But, more impressive is his 51.6% average from behind the arc. He finished the game against South Carolina with twelve points, three rebounds, and 4-7 in three-pointers. The numbers are small, but the effect is much greater. Having a big man coming off the bench with Liver’s three-point consistency will play a colossal part in Michigan’s tough Big Ten schedule.
The fifth-ranked Michigan Wolverines will look to remain perfect as they take on the Western Michigan Broncos (5-4) on December 15. The game will be streaming on the Big Ten Network.