Michigan Basketball Gameday: No. 4 Michigan invades New York, takes on Pittsburgh in NIT semis
• Who: Pittsburgh (4-0) vs. No. 4 Michigan (3-0); NIT Season Tip-Off semifinal
• Tipoff: 9:30 p.m. at Madison Square Garden (New York)
• Live coverage: Join MLive.com 30 minutes prior to tip for live updates, and follow Nick Baumgardner (@nickbaumgardner) on Twitter.
• TV: ESPN2
• Radio: Michigan Radio Network
• Line: Michigan -2 1/2
ISSUE OF THE DAY
Michigan will likely get its first real test of the 2012-13 season against a major-conference opponent at Madison Square Garden. And as far as this matchup goes, the battle at point guard will be the most interesting to watch.
Michigan sophomore All-American Trey Burke will square off against Pitt senior Tray Woodall. Woodall, a scrappy senior guard from nearby Brooklyn, is averaging a team-best 13.8 points and 7.3 assists this season. This game may be more complex than simply saying "whichever team's point guard plays better, wins," but it's an important matchup to be sure.
Elsewhere, Pitt is going to try its best to keep up with Michigan's backcourt duo of Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. with true freshman James Robinson and Central Michigan transfer (and former UM recruit) Trey Zeigler. Pitt has always been known as a hard-charging, physical team on the glass -- but so far, it just hasn't happened, as the Panthers rank 180th in the country in total rebounding. Pitt does have 5-star 6-foot-10 big man Steven Adams, but he hasn't exactly dominated yet. This will be a guard-driven game.
More than that, this is Michigan's first real test of the season. The Wolverines crushed three lesser foes earlier this month, and will go to show the country what they're all about (for better or for worse) on a national stage at Madison Square Garden.