The Wolverine

February 2013

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Making Their Case John Beilein's 2012-13 U-M Team Hopes To Earn A Place Among The Best Ever At Michigan W By Chris Balas hen Michigan's 2012-13 basketball Wolverines beat Nebraska at home Jan. 9, they tied a U-M record with their 16th straight win without a loss to start the year. Not since the 1985-86 season had a team started so strongly out of the gate. However, that means absolutely nothing for the rest of the year. "What have we done yet?" head coach John Beilein said before Michigan took its undefeated record to Columbus to face Ohio State Jan. 13. "Everybody's got to understand, we have played 16 games, and we haven't played a top-20 team on the road yet. If we had played a top-20 team on the road, maybe nobody would be talking about the record." Beilein, though, appreciated the fact that his team might think a bit more of it than he did, and he was quick to defend them after they fell 56-53 at OSU after battling back from a 21-point deficit to tie the game in the second half. He later laughed when the following road game, an impressive 83-75 win at No. 9 Minnesota, was called a "must win," noting it was way too early in the season to characterize any conference contest as such. He'd also be the first to dismiss any talk that his team might be among the best in Michigan history. That cannot be determined until the team's complete body of work can be evaluated. The Best Of All Time Beilein isn't the only one cautious with his praise. From afar, former Wolverines preface theirs with "there's still a lot to prove," but they marvel at the skill and selflessness of this year's group. It's the latter trait that separated the best teams in Michigan's storied history from other talented squads, according to a few who played on some of those teams. The 1984-85 and '85-86 teams, for

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