The third-ranked Wolverines have Indiana, 73-57, in Bloomington, Ind on Saturday afternoon in the auditorium, moving one game closer to winning their first conference title since 2014. Michigan can claim the title by it wins one of its three remaining games, provided that the percentage win is the deciding factor

Despite a brief turnaround from Thursday night’s win against No. 12 Iowa, Michigan, had little trouble sending the Hoosiers off Michigan led for most of the game – and mostly double digits in the second half

The Wolverines didn’t play a clean offensive game, but limited Indiana’s Trayce Jackson-Davis to their worst game of the season and received outstanding performances from Franz Wagner, who scored 21 points, and Isaiah Livers, who scored 16 (11 in the second Half) Mike Smith added 14 points on 4 out of 5 shots and Hunter Dickinson scored 13 points on seven rebounds

Few teams can win individual matchups against Michigan’s two-star wings. And when both play well, it’s extremely difficult to beat the Wolverines. Wagner followed a 21-point performance against Iowa with another efficient game In the first At halftime, he scored 14 points by attacking and reaching the free-throw line, and he added a few more highlight games after halftime, including a block on a dunk attempt and a high-skying layup in the transition

At the start of the second half, it was Livers who carried Michigan’s offense, immediately throwing a deep 3-pointer down to open the half, hitting his second over a struggling defender, then dropping a wide-open look after Indiana Dickinson had teamed up twice

The two linked up in a personal 6-0 run that was underscored by a emphatic setback from Livers and extended Michigan’s lead to 17 by a little more than 11 minutes, and when Indiana finished this run with a 5-0 Vorsprung reacted, turning Wagner into an and-one

Just days after capping the nation’s top scorer Luka Garza on 6 of 19 shots to 16 points, Dickinson made another notable defensive foray against Indiana’s Trayce Jackson-Davis, who came into the game averaging 203 points he scored three points in the first half on 1 of 7 shots and while the basket was in and a dunk over Dickinson it only happened because another Michigan defender got hit by dribbling and Dickinson had to turn to help otherwise Dickinson was playing textbook defense , walled and fought vertically with no fouling that led to many Jackson-Davis failures

The second half wasn’t much better for Jackson-Davis as he scored seven points in 2 of 5 shots and finished with 10 points in 3 of 12 shots and two turnovers

On Saturday, Indiana averaged 238 free throws, seventh nationwide. Nevertheless, it was the Wolverines who spent much of the first half on the line. Michigan drew 11 fouls in the first 20 minutes, quickly reached the bonus and shot 16 of 18 free throws Wagner was the catalyst, pulled numerous fouls on trips to the basket and shot 7-on-7 on the line.The free throws kept Michigan’s offensive afloat in the first half, even when the Wolverines shot 11 of 27 from the field / p>

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This article originally appeared in the Detroit Free Press: Michigan Basketball Rolls Indiana, 73-57, now 1 win from the Big Ten title

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