Michigan basketball fights for small-gap loss against no. 1 Purdue


Teddy Morin

Michigan’s Hunter Dickinson puts up a successful free throw following a shooting foul on Purdue Forward Caleb Furst. January 26, 2023.

This article won a 2023 Michigan Interscholastic Press Association (MIPA) second-place award for Sports Action Photo.

Purdue beat out the University of Michigan Basketball Thursday, Jan. 26, but the Wolverines did not go out without a fight, ending the game with a score of 75-70.

After opening with a three-point jump shot from Hunter Dickinson, Center, Michigan maintained a lead for the majority of the first half, starting with eight baskets within the first five minutes of the game, giving them a three-point lead at 13-10. However, by the time the half closed out, Purdue took the lead with a score of 41-35. 

Dickinson ended the game as Michigan’s top performer, with 21 points, seven rebounds, four assists and one block during his 33 minutes played. The 7-foot-1, Virginia-born player also shot 42.9% from beyond the arc.

Zach Edey, Purdue’s top scorer and Naismith Men’s College Player of the Year hopeful, put up similar stats with 19 points, nine rebounds, one assist and two blocks during his 32 minutes played. Edey, a 7-foot-4 Center from Ontario, did not attempt any three-pointers and has not attempted any in his 21 games played so far in the 2022-23 season. 

During halftime, Michigan’s cheerleaders ran to the court, performing with joy and passion to ecstatic applause.

During the second half, Michigan kept fighting as they were only six points behind the winningest team in the Big Ten Conference. The Wolverines only scored 13 points against Purdue’s 18 in the first ten minutes of the half, although they found a way to bounce back as they scored 22 against Purdue’s 17 in the other ten minutes. 

With 37 seconds left, Michigan Guard Dug McDaniel assisted Dickinson in a successful three-point jump shot. With 15 seconds left on the clock, Guard Joey Baker followed up with a layup. With only seven seconds left, Baker landed a final three-point jump shot assisted by Dickinson, which left Michigan three points behind at 73-70. 

Unfortunately for the Wolverines, a costly personal foul from Baker on Purdue’s Brandon Newman guaranteed the win for Purdue.

Throughout the entirety of the late-night game, the crowd was ecstatic. Michigan’s congested student section wore provided pink shirts in honor of breast cancer awareness, holding pink pompoms along with the rest of the fans, playing a major factor in the figurative electricity that was felt in the arena. Almost every time Purdue’s offense made a drive to the basket, the student section intimidated the opposing players with loud, booming voices with a deep, steady resonance. 

Throughout the night, student spectators sang along to music that was played during the game, including Michigan’s fight song played by their band. Fans brought signs they held up throughout the game, bearing slogans such as “Assistant coaches sit down,” and, “Stand up until first basket.”

An exterior view of Crisler Center, Michigan’s home arena, shows fans leaving the building as the game comes to a close. January 26, 2023. (Teddy Morin)