The Wolverine

March 2019

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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80 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2019 BY CHRIS BALAS J ohn Beilein was headed toward the exit following his postgame interview after a 65-52 home win over Maryland Feb. 16 when a student stopped him on the way out. The U-M head coach smiled when he learned she was a senior who had been a season ticket holder. "So you've seen some pretty good basketball here over the last four years!" he said with a laugh. Has she ever. In the last few years, Crisler Cen- ter has been electric with sold-out crowds and an amazing student turnout, and it's never been better than this season. Even tickets for December "guar- antee games" with teams like Bing- hamton were going for twice face value on the secondary market, and single tickets in the last row of the upper bowl for a home game with Michigan State Feb. 24 were going for $175 a week before the game. The atmosphere was never better than during a 65-49 win over Ohio State Jan. 29. The students showed up in full force, and the arena was packed for a Tuesday night, 9 p.m. start despite a cold spell that crippled the entire state. Classes were even canceled for the following two days due to the projected bitter tempera- tures and wind chills. "It was amazing to have that type of energy in the building when it's below zero," Beilein said. "I'm just really proud that we can have that type of culture at the University of Michigan right now, that people love athletics, love basketball. "To be able to have a 9 p.m. game on a Tuesday night and have that STRETCH RUN Michigan Remained Right In The Big Ten Race Heading Into The Final Weeks Of Play With junior point guard Zavier Simpson spearheading the charge, the Wolverines ranked second nationally in both points per game allowed (57.1) and in defensive efficiency per as of Feb. 18. PHOTO BY LON HORWEDEL

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