The rematch of the 2013 National Championship between Michigan and Louisville is set for Sunday. While no one on the current U-M squad participated in that game, the feeling of winning for head coach John Beilein, and themselves, lingers.
The Wolverines will certainly have their work cut out for them against the Cardinals. Considering how poorly the Wolverines rebounded the ball on the offensive end against Oklahoma State, D.J. Wilson says that Louisville has athletic big men that can rebound on the offensive glass.
Something, clearly, the team needs to tighten up if it wants to win.
"They have nice guards," Wilson said. "Their starting guards can shoot the ball well. That's nothing different than we're used to in the Big Ten. But I think the biggest difference is how hard they attack the offensive glass. They have a lot of athletic fours and fives that can get after it."
Not many people expected the Wolverines to get this far, let alone advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. According to Wilson, and many other players on the team, the offense was never the issue. It was clearly the defense that lagged behind. It wasn't an improvement on Friday, but it has certainly improved from what it was early in the season.
"I think it's on the other end, just defense, starting to click on that end," Wilson. "Like I said, the offense has always been there throughout the course of the year. It was just whether or not we were going to play defense. We have so far in the second half of the year, and hopefully we can carry that momentum on the defensive side into tomorrow."
Both teams are in a unique position where it only has one day to gameplan for each other. Others say that preparing for a Rick Pitino-coached team is difficult because his defense is so complicated. However, the Wolverines are equally as dangerous to gameplan for in just a single day. According to Wilson, U-M has plenty of players that can shoot the lights out during any given game.
"Playing four games in four days, that's something that you have to kind of just adapt to as far as learning their offenses and whatnot. But at the same time, I also think that we're hard to scout for with just a day between the games just because we're so complex on the offensive end, and we have so many weapons."