WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The son of Purdue basketball legend Glenn “Big Dog” Robinson came to Mackey Arena on Wednesday night and broke the heart of his father’s former team.
Sophomore forward Glenn Robinson III’s layup at the overtime buzzer lifted the Big Ten Conference leading and 16th-ranked Wolverines to a 77-76 victory over the Boilermakers.
“At first, I thought the pass to me was too high, and then once I caught it and shot it, the ball was rolling on the rim, and I was praying that it would go in,” said Robinson III, who finished with a team-best 17 points. He also had eight rebounds and three assists against a school that recruited him until he picked Michigan.
Michigan, which trailed by as many as 19 points in the first half, trailed 76-75 with 12.2 seconds remaining when Purdue freshman guard Kendall Stephens missed the front end of a one-and-one free throw situation with a chance to give Purdue a three-point lead.
The Wolverines (20-7, 12-3 Big Ten) called a timeout with 2.9 seconds to play, and then Purdue countered with a timeout after seeing the Michigan alignment.
Guard Caris LeVert inbounded the ball from in front of the Michigan bench to Robinson, who was in the far corner.
Robinson slithered to the rim and got the layup to fall as the final horn sounded. The officials looked at the monitor to make sure the shot was released before the horn. It was clear the shot was good.
Glenn Robinson II was the 1994 Wooden Award winner and the first selection in the 1994 NBA Draft, going to the Milwaukee Bucks. His son attended Lake Central High School, about 90 miles north of the Purdue campus but opted to sign with Michigan.
Michigan coach John Beilein said the winning play is one the Wolverines practice at least 10 times a year, but until Wednesday night, they had not run it this season.
“I especially was happy for Glenn for the way he played tonight,” Beilein said. “This game obviously means a lot to him. It has a lot of emotion in it. On that last play, one of the options is to get it to Glenn and just have Glenn make a play.
“(Guard) Caris LeVert saw the switch and the mismatch and just threw it, and Glenn went up and got it. He had to finish it through a crowd, and he did a great job. The whole idea is to throw it over the top, putting Glenn in a jump ball on the opposite side. You want to bring the defense one way, and then throw it to the opposite side.”
Beilein said it is difficult to determine if Michigan had a bit of a letdown after defeating Michigan State 79-70 on Sunday.
“I thought we had a couple of good looks, but we had a couple of really good looks early that didn’t go,” Beilein said. “At the same time, it seemed like Purdue was making every shot.”
Purdue, which got a game-best 22 points from senior guard Terone Johnson, fell to 15-13, 5-10 and has dropped eight of its 10 most recent games. The Boilermakers have lost three in a row.
Purdue ran out to a 7-0 lead, and the Boilermakers took advantage of Michigan’s cold field-goal shooting to build a 37-24 advantage at-halftime.
The Wolverines made only three of their first 17 field goal attempts and found themselves on the short end of a 27-8 score after Terone Johnson sank a 3-pointer.
Michigan countered with a 16-6 run to slice the deficit to 33-24 with 1:23 left before intermission, but Purdue got field goals from center A.J. Hammons and point guard Ronnie Johnson during the final minute to increase the margin to 13.
The Boilermakers made 13 of 25 opening-half field goal attempts (52 percent), including 5 of 11 from beyond the arc, and 6 of 6 from the free-throw line. Michigan was 8 of 27 from the field (29.6 percent), including 2 of 10 from 3-point range, and 6 of 9 from the line.
Terone Johnson scored 16 first-half points, and younger brother Ronnie added 11. They combined to make 10 of 15 field-goal attempts, 5 of 7 from 3-point range.
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