Michigan players have the right to be tired.
After all, U-M just played five games in eight days, capping off a whirlwind weekend that started with an aborted runway plane crash on Wednesday that led all the way to Michigan capturing its second ever Big Ten Tournament championship five days later on Sunday.
The Wolverines, of course, defeated Wisconsin, 71-56, in the nations capital, solidifying a crazy turn of events in U-Ms’ storied basketball history.
And for their effort, Michigan (24-11) earned a No. 7 seed in the NCAA Tournament and will face No. 10 Oklahoma State (20-12) this Friday at 12:15 p.m, just four hours away in. in Indianapolis.
However, before U-M leaves, don’t expect them to move too much on their feet says Michigan coach John Beilein, who noted he plans to rest his major minute players this week before U-M's travel day down south.
“I think wemake sure the major minutes guys get two days off their legs right now,” Beilein said. “That’s five games in eight days, that’s four in a row to two days recovery. … We get two days off where they don’t do anything, except lift some weights, get some massages or do anything they can for recovery.”
Beilein says he’ll practice the young players on Tuesday, have a short practice on Wednesday before leaving later in the afternoon for the tournament. On Thursday, Beilein says they we’ll have their mandatory NCAA practice in Indianapolis.
Oh yeah, if you're wondering, Beilein says they won’t be flying to Indianapolis either.
“We’ll bus down to Indy, is that OK? We’ll bus down to Indianapolis,” Beilein joked. “Sometimes they would say ‘this is four hours, let’s fly.’ We’re not going to have any problems to bus down to Indy.”
Adding: “We love that city. I love that city. It’s going to be easier travel for our Michigan fans to get down there. It’s a great atmosphere."
For the complete interview with John Beilein, please listen to his podcast interview with WTK's Sam Webb below.