March Madness

2014 NCAA Tournament Preview: (11) Tennessee vs. (2) Michigan

A breakdown of Michigan-Tennessee in the Sweet 16, plus a chance to vote on who you think will win.

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
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Tennessee Volunteers
Playing in their third game in just five nights, the Volunteers never looked fresher all season. They did what the Duke Blue Devils couldn’t, continuously getting quality looks against the Mercer Bears defense as they handled them 83-63 to move onto the Sweet 16. The Volunteers got to the free throw line frequently, connecting on 23 of their 26 attempts, while also shooting 49 percent from the field. The battle of the boards was a mismatch to say the least as the Volunteers pounded Mercer on the glass to the tune of 41-19. Four Volunteers scored in double figures with Josh Richardson’s leading the way with 26 points. Jarnell Stokes had another huge double-double, finishing with 17 points, 18 rebounds and five assists as well. Look for him to be the key against a Michigan team that had their fair share of difficulties rebounding the basketball against a big and physical Texas team in the Round of 32. If the Volunteers can hurt them on the glass and limit their quality looks from beyond the arc, they’ll be in the Elite Eight.

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Michigan Wolverines
When the Wolverines are hitting like they did against Texas in the Round of 32, there aren’t many teams who can keep up. The Longhorns weren’t one of them, as they allowed the Wolverines to shoot 14-28 from beyond the arc en route to a 79-65 Michigan victory. Nik Stauskas scored a team high 17 points, including four triples. Jordan Morgan had a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds, but overall the Longhorns were far more dominant on the glass, outrebounding the Wolverines by 11. That’s the only area they can really look to improve on in the Sweet 16 against Tennessee, because their offensive efficiency was through the roof. Not only did they shoot 50 percent from distance, but they shot 44 percent from the field, 81 percent from the charity stripe and had 16 of their 24 field goals assisted. What makes the later more impressive is that they did so while only turning it over four times. The inability to rebound the basketball is a trend that cannot continue against the Volunteers, though, because it can negate far too much of what they do well.

Alan is an expert gambling writer who works as one of the chief editors for Basketball Insiders. He has been covering online gambling and sports betting for over 8 years, having written for the likes of Sportlens,, The Sports Daily, 90min, and His particular specialisms include US online casinos and gambling regulations, and soccer and basketball betting. Based in London, Alan holds an MA in English Literature and is a passionate supporter of Chelsea FC.

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