Few teams in college basketball are hotter than Michigan right now. The Wolverines ended the regular season on a five-game winning streak, then won their second Big Ten Tournament title in a row with a 75-66 win over Purdue.
Michigan ended up a No. 3 seed in the West Regional and will play No. 14-seed Montana in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Wichita, Kan. Some, including NFL Network’s Rich Eisen, see the Wolverines’ placement as a slight.
So, @umichbball beats Michigan State twice in a row, pounds Purdue to win the Big Ten Tourney and both Michigan State and Purdue play in Detroit while Michigan plays in the West Bracket, starting in Kansas.
What a total load of crap. Let's #GoBlue
— Rich Eisen (@richeisen) March 11, 2018
Perhaps Eisen has a point. Michigan has gone 2-0 against Michigan State this season, including a 75-64 win in the conference tournament semifinals. The comfortable win over the Boilermakers in the final only bolstered the Wolverines’ resume.
But Purdue ended up as a No. 2 seed, and Michigan State a No. 3. Both will play first-round games at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, which is about 40 miles from Ann Arbor, Mich., home of the Wolverines.
Many Michigan fans are upset, and maybe rightfully so. But it should be noted that the committee likely considered teams’ entire body of work, and Michigan did suffer regular-season losses to LSU, Nebraska and Northwestern, none of which qualified for the national tournament.
Nevertheless, the Wolverines are sure to use the perceived slight as motivation. After winning the league championship last season, Michigan advanced to the Sweet 16 before falling 69-68 to Oregon.
Correction: Nebraska and Northwestern defeated Michigan in the regular season. They were misidentified in the original post. Land of 10 regrets the error.