The Wolverine

November 2021

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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NOVEMBER 2021 THE WOLVERINE 47 2021-22 BASKETBALL PREVIEW "If you guys watch our practice, we're coming out with busted lips and scratches on our arms," Collins said. "Everyone is coming out with something wrong, whether it's walking out with a limp or [something else]. I had a big busted lip for a week. "We are so competitive. We're scrim- maging for 10 minutes and everybody is beat up and not wanting to lose. That's what our identity is — we're going to be the toughest team in the NCAA." Collins joins a guard rotation that fea- tures a pair of veterans in fifth-year senior Eli Brooks and graduate transfer DeVante' Jones, who is another new face in the program. Other talented pieces exist in sophomore guard Zeb Jackson and fresh- man Kobe Bufkin, the latter of whom gave Collins the busted lip he referred to. He took the brunt of many beatings in some of Michigan's first practices. "[Jones and I] have been going at it and battling," Collins said. "I get it the worst. I'll be battling with DJ. And then DJ subs out. Now I've got to battle Eli, he's no joke either. Then you still have Zeb and Kobe. I get all the battle wounds and scars. I hold my head high and stick my chest out be- cause I've been battling." Jones averaged 19.3 points, 7.2 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 26 games at Coastal Carolina last season. Collins praised him as one of the more cerebral players he has come across. "DeVante' is crafty and one of the smartest players I've been with or against," Collins said. "The way he thinks is good and he knows a lot because he's been play- ing college basketball for a long time. "One thing I just found out is that he has a 6-foot-7 wingspan. I was wonder- ing how he averaged so many rebounds. Then in practice, he grabs rebounds with his fingertips over [sophomore center Hunter Dickinson] and [freshman for- ward Moussa Diabate]. He's a smart player and skilled. He has some athleti- cism, don't let him fool you. He's a good overall player." Having Brooks and Jones in Collins' ear is something he is not taking for granted. The two upperclassman leaders have been leaving their mark on the freshman so far. "I ask them questions all practice," the rookie admitted. "I try and figure things out as quickly as I can. I'm a quick learner. Usually, after the first couple of times, I figure things out. They pull me to the side and tell me things I need to do and work on and how to get out of certain situations." — Anthony Broome JUWAN HOWARD, TOM IZZO WEIGH IN ON PLAYER RETENTION IN TRANSFER PORTAL ERA The transfer portal has made it more difficult to retain players in the current state of college basketball. It has not been a problem in Ann Arbor thus far how Michigan has kept guys around. Head coach Juwan Howard sees a simple rea- son for it. "It's Michigan. I'm not saying it in an arrogant way, but it's a place that keeps reeling you back in," Howard said at Big Ten Media Days in Indianapolis. "The block M never gets old to all of us. The en- ergy that you go into [Michigan Stadium], watching a football game with 115,000- plus there cheering on Coach [Jim] Har- baugh's team. Then you have the Michi- gan education. That speaks volumes in a lot of ways. You can go on and on." Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo did not paint as rosy a picture and shared his concerns for college basketball's new era. "I just worry about all the movement, and what are they moving for?" Izzo asked. "When the going gets tough, are we bolting or hanging in there? There is a place and a time. Where everybody thinks the coaches are worried about roster management, we get paid to make [those] decisions. I'm more worried about what does it do to the student- athlete. I think as we've had reunions — how many guys would have trans- ferred if it was the modern day?" — Anthony Broome 2021-22 Men's Basketball Schedule Date Opponent Time* (TV) Nov. 10 Buffalo 6:30 p.m. (BTN) Nov. 13 vs. Prairie View A&M% 8 p.m. (BTN) Nov. 16 Seton Hall# 9 p.m. (FS1) Nov. 19 vs. UNLV^ 9:30 p.m. PT (ESPN) Nov. 21 vs. Arizona/Wichita State^ 6:30 or 9 p.m. PT (ESPN/ESPN2) Nov. 24 Tarleton State 7 p.m. (BTN) Dec. 1 at North Carolina$ 9:15 p.m. (ESPN) Dec. 4 San Diego State 1 p.m. (CBS) Dec. 7 at Nebraska 6 p.m. CT (ESPN2) Dec. 11 Minnesota 6:30 p.m. (FS1) Dec. 18 Southern Utah 7 p.m. (BTN) Dec. 21 Purdue Fort Wayne 7 p.m. (BTN) Dec. 30 at Central Florida 7 p.m. (ESPN2) Jan. 4 at Rutgers 7 p.m. (BTN) Jan. 8 Michigan State 2:30 p.m. (FOX) Jan. 11 Purdue 9 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) Jan. 14 at Illinois 8 p.m. CT (FS1) Jan. 18 Maryland 7 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) Jan. 23 at Indiana 12/3:30 p.m. (CBS) Jan. 26 Northwestern 6:30 p.m. (BTN) Jan. 29 at Michigan State 12:30 p.m. (CBS) Feb. 1 Nebraska 9 p.m. (BTN) Feb. 5 at Purdue 2:30 p.m. (FOX) Feb. 8 at Penn State 9 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) Feb. 12 Ohio State 6 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2) Feb. 17 at Iowa 6 p.m. CT (ESPN/ESPN2) Feb. 20 at Wisconsin 12 p.m. CT (CBS) Feb. 23 Rutgers 7 p.m. (BTN) Feb. 27 Illinois 2 p.m. (CBS) Mar. 3 Iowa 9 p.m. (FS1) Mar. 6 at Ohio State 12:30 p.m. (FOX) Mar. 9-13 Big Ten Basketball Tournament in Indianapolis * Times in ET unless otherwise noted; % Coaches vs. Racism in Washington, D.C.; # Gavitt Tipoff Games in Ann Arbor; ^ Roman Main Event in Las Vegas; $ Big Ten/ACC Challenge

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