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Posted on Sun, Nov 13, 2011 : 7:49 p.m.

Trey Burke's lesson, more cold shooting and a front court-battle among 4 things to watch for Michigan vs. Towson

By Nick Baumgardner

So, the Michigan basketball team is 1-0.

It's not exactly a dominant or pretty 1-0, but 1-0 nevertheless.

The Wolverines struggled to find a shooting rhythm in the first 20 minutes against Ferris State on Friday and found themselves clinging to a one-point lead early in the second half.

Things worked themselves out as Michigan finished the game on a 21-1 run before closing out a 59-33 win.

The Wolverines have two games this week before shipping out to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational. Here are four things to watch Monday heading into a home game against Towson (8:30 p.m.,

Did Trey Burke learn his lesson?


Stu Douglass had 14 points, five rebounds and four assists in a team-high 35 minutes in the Michigan basketball team's season opener.

Jeff Sainlar |

One day prior to the Ferris State game, Michigan coach John Beilein heaped praise on freshman point guard Trey Burke for his play in practice, and awarded him spot in the starting lineup.

The award never came to fruition, though, as Burke was late to the team's gameday walkthrough, prompting Beilein to put him on the bench and start Stu Douglass at the point in his place.

Burke came off the bench and played 18 minutes, but was 1-for-7 shooting with no assists.

He's a freshman, he's learning and he's growing up as an adult — but if Michigan is going to realize its potential this season, he has to be better.

Douglass had arguably the best night of anyone on Michigan's roster, going for 14 points, five rebounds and four assists in a team-high 35 minutes.

But he's not a point guard. He has to be able to look for his own shot.

The first real test of Burke's career has already arrived, it'll be interesting to see how he handles it.

Did Morgan do enough to return to the starting five?
For the second straight game, Beilein went with sophomore Jon Horford to start the game at the five instead of Jordan Morgan.

In the exhibition game against Wayne State, Horford was a bit more active than Morgan in about the same amount of time.

But against Ferris State, Morgan was markedly better.

Horford collected three rebounds, but did not attempt a shot in 15 minutes of play. Morgan, meanwhile, dropped in seven points and collected six rebounds in 17 minutes off the bench.

Michigan needs all the help it can get on the low block right now, as it was out-rebounded on the offensive glass against Ferris State and finished the game with an even rebounding margin (39 for both sides).

Does Beilein ride the hot hand here? Or does he continue to play both evenly, waiting for someone to grab the spot by the throat.

We'll find out.

What's up with Vogrich?
As a team, Michigan has struggled shooting so far.

Through the exhibition and one regular-season game, the Wolverines are shooting 38.3 percent from the floor.

From 3-point range, Michigan is shooting just 26.9 percent.

Everyone's struggling to find their stroke, but sharp-shooting junior Matt Vogrich might be colder than anyone.

Vogrich was a combined 1-for-8 from the floor and 0-for-5 from behind the arc in both games.

Last season, he was Michigan's most accurate 3-point shooter, hitting on a 38.7 percent clip. In Big Ten play, Vogrich was a 48 percent 3-point shooter.

He's rarely going to see more than 15 minutes per game, especially with a team this deep, but he has to hit open shots when he's on the floor.

He's a classic slump-buster. Meaning he can come off the bench when the team is struggling to find offense, and instantly give it to them.

So far he hasn't done that. And, so far, the Wolverines have had trouble working their way out of offensive funks.

Free throws, free throws
Michigan didn't get to the line much against Ferris State (28 3-pointers attempted has something to do with that), but when it did make its way to the stripe, it wasn't very good.

The Wolverines were 6-for-10 as a team against the Bulldogs a week after going just 4-for-12 in the exhibition win over Wayne State.

Add it up, and Michigan is shooting 45 percent from the foul line through its exhibition and lone regular season game.

Last season, Michigan shot nearly 70 percent as a team.

The Wolverines aren't hitting anything consistently so far this season, and sometimes the easiest way to break a slump is to find a rhythm at the foul line.

That hasn't happened either this year. And if it continues, poor foul shooting will catch up with Michigan.

Sooner rather than later.

Nick Baumgardner covers Michigan basketball for He can be reached at 734-623-2514, by email at and followed on Twitter @nickbaumgardner.