The Wolverine

March 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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10 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2018   INSIDE MICHIGAN ATHLETICS Michigan fifth-year senior Duncan Robinson will be one of the key pieces to U-M's finish this season. He was shooting 38.1 percent from long range through games of Feb. 20, but knows he should be better and has responded well after los- ing his starting spot to freshman Isaiah Livers. Head coach John Beilein has given him the green light, and then some. "The other day, there was the goal of making 48 threes in four minutes. He made 50 out of 55 shots on the run, mov- ing," Beilein said in mid-February. "I know he can really shoot the ball, and I encourage him to shoot the ball." Robinson did just that with six made threes in U-M's 74-59 win over Iowa Feb. 14. Prior to that outburst, he sat down with us for this month's Q&A session: The Wolverine: You moved back into the starting lineup after Isaiah Livers got hurt and missed a couple of games (at Northwestern and at Wisconsin). What's your preference when it comes to starting or coming off the bench? Robinson: "At this point, I'm pretty comfortable with both. I've embraced both roles at different time of my career, so whatever Coach Beilein or the team asks me to do, I'll do." The Wolverine: The team appears to be in good position for an NCAA Tournament berth heading down the stretch and is playing pretty well. What's the attitude in the locker room? Robinson: "We have a little ways to go, I think. There are some things we can tighten up. We're far from a finished product, but a lot of teams are like that too. "It's all about who can come together at the right time." The Wolverine: Coach Beilein says he's looking for more veteran leadership down the stretch. How much weight is he putting on you and the other veterans to lead this team? Robinson: "We have a lot of responsibility, [senior guard] Muhammad[-Ali Abdur-Rahkman] and I, and also [junior forward] Moe [Wagner], being the other captain. Player-led teams are the ones that win late in the season. "That falls on our shoulders. We talk about it and, moving forward, we've got to be the guys that are the loudest and setting the example for everyone else." The Wolverine: Free throws have been a problem for this team, especially late in games. Coach Beilein seems to have made it a point that he wants you and Abdur-Rahkman with the ball in your hands at the end of games. How comfortable are you with that? Robinson: "Having been through it before, having stepped into late-game situations and having made free throws — that experience really helps us and gives us confidence moving forward. "If we can step up and do it, I think it encourages other guys." The Wolverine: You guys have been a tough out at home this year (15-1 as of Feb. 20). What's the key to that success? Robinson: "We know we have to protect home court. Any home-court loss is a bad loss. If we do that, it puts us in good position moving forward, whether it be the Big Ten Tourna- ment or NCAA Tournament. "We just have to focus on the things that are controllable." — Chris Balas After knocking down six three-pointers in U-M's 74-59 win over Iowa Feb. 14, Robinson ranked sixth on the school's all-time list for treys with 215. PHOTO BY PER KJELDSEN Sitting Down With Michigan Fifth-Year Senior Forward Duncan Robinson

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