Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/18/14
Michigan basketball (24-5, 11-5), ranked #7 in the country, will take their act to West Lafayette on Wednesday night for their final road game of the year at Purdue. Tip is set for 7 pm eastern and the game will be aired on the Big Ten Network. To be clear, Michigan fans one and all will be thrilled that the 2012-13 road slate is coming to a close. The Wolverines are 17-0 at home this year and have only lost at Crisler once in the last two seasons combined (against Purdue). John Beilein’s team is 3-0 on neutral courts with wins over Pitt, Kansas State, and West Virginia – a resume that bodes well for the upcoming Big Ten and NCAA tourneys. The road, however, has been unkind. The Wolverines are just 4-5 in true away games and are fresh off the disaster at Penn State a week ago, a loss that is quickly becoming a thing of the past after a riveting win over the Spartans on Sunday. Trey Burke Purdue (14-15, 7-9) hasn’t had a typical Boilermaker season as they are in a bit of a roster rebuilding mode. Despite that, they did go into the Kohl Center and smack the Badgers in the mouth this past weekend with a 13-point win in the most hostile of venues. The ability is there for Matt Painter’s team, they just haven’t been able to display it with regularity. For Michigan, it’s all about the ‘D’. The offense has held up well all year even with the shocking 0-12 effort from three point range on Sunday. But anytime you have Trey Burke taking most of the dribbles things are going to be just fine when it comes to scoring the basketball. Michigan should get a lift from beyond the arc as it appears Nik Stauskas is ready to go after taking a jarring elbow in the State game that required 12 stitches above his right eye. The Wolverines had all kinds of trouble stopping other teams in the middle of their Big Ten schedule, particularly when Jordan Morgan was out and/or hobbling with his ankle injury. Three games ago against Illinois saw Michigan finally put forth a dominating defensive performance thanks to an active and healthy Morgan along with rising defender Caris LeVert. And then Penn State happened. Michigan led by 15 with under 11 minutes to go and then suddenly couldn’t stop the meager Nittany Lions attack, eventually losing the game in embarrassing fashion. Fortunately, the young roster was able to get off the mat and play a strong defensive game against the Spartans. The interior presence of Morgan once again led the charge and then two late steals by Burke (who had five steals in all) sealed the deal. Michigan can even their road record at 5-5 with a win and put themselves in great shape for a 1st round bye in the Big Ten Tourney. Back on January 24th in Ann Arbor the Wolverines took out Purdue by a final count of 68-53. When a team has aspirations of going deep into March/April, that Thursday bye becomes a coveted a thing. Much like in professional sports where you just try to make the playoffs and get hot while you’re there, in NCAA hoops the idea is to get a high seed and find your groove when it matters most. Michigan was in rhythm most of the year until the horrors of a regular Big Ten season finally caught up with them. With the Purdue game and the season finale at home v. Indiana on Sunday, Burke and company have a chance to get on that kind of a roll. One thing I’ve noticed while covering this team all season long is that occasionally they lack the swagger necessary to do truly great things. An easy example is the Fab Five. They did not care one bit what others thought of them. Internally, they knew there were great and went out and played that way, especially on the big stage of the NCAA tourney. Might Burke’s heroics at the end of the MSU game give Michigan some of that same juice? Prediction: So far this season Rob is 25-4 predicting the outcome of Michigan games and I am 24-5. We both feel that Michigan has enough in the tank to pull out a tough road win against Purdue. Rob: Michigan 68-59 Joe: Michigan 72-66 If you would like to receive an email notification each time a Michigan Basketball story is posted you can fill out the Email Notification Form. You can follow us on Twitter. I am and @isportsJoe and Rob is @isportsRob
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Harris sues Mayweather for $20M for lying in an interview with Katie Couric

The NBA needs to leave 'hack-a-whoever' rules alone

Top Rank threatens to sue over Mayweather-Pacquiao piracy

Titans already tailoring offense to suit Mariota's strengths

Pettine: Manziel isn't favorite for Browns' starting QB job


Randy Gregory denies 'weed problem,' says he's immature

Jameis Winston wants Bucs to sign LSU OT La'El Collins

Chris Bosh on blood clot diagnosis: ‘I’m lucky to be alive’

Eagles coach Chip Kelly made a mess at quarterback

Report: Bulls management anxious to fire Tom Thibodeau

Teammate: Zach Mettenberger sees himself as Titans starter

Making sense of the AL East pile-up

Brandon Prust sorry for saying referee ‘tries to play God’

Ron Roenicke and the career afterlives of fired managers

Knicks announcer's MVP ballot had Curry behind Marc Gasol

Edelman mocks Belichick in Cinco de Mayo tweet

Projecting the 2015 MLB All-Star Game rosters after April

Tiger hasn't slept in three days since Lindsey Vonn breakup

David Blatt: ‘No excuses’ for Cavaliers’ Game 1 loss to Bulls

The 2015 NBA Draft big board, first edition

What’s next for the San Antonio Spurs?

Five players on the block after the NFL Draft

Five overhyped NFL Draft storylines that didn't play out

College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Making sense of the AL East pile-up

Chris Bosh on blood clot diagnosis: ‘I’m lucky to be alive’

Projecting the All-Star Game rosters

Eagles coach Chip Kelly made a mess at quarterback

Tiger hasn't slept in three days since Lindsey Vonn breakup

2015 NBA Draft big board, first edition

Eliminate Hack-A-Player: Don't reward violating sports rules

No easy solution to the problem of early NFL draft entrants

What’s next for the Spurs?

Cauley-Stein changes middle name to 'Trill'

NFL has Los Angeles Rams webpage

10 undrafted free agents to watch

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.