- Created on Sunday, 31 March 2013 12:31
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP)
Another fabulous group of young players has Michigan headed back to the Final Four.
Led by Big Ten player of the year Trey Burke and sharp-shooting guard Nik Stauskas, one of three freshman starters, the Wolverines dominated Florida right from tipoff, scoring the game's first 13 points and routing the Gators 79-59 in the South Regional final Sunday.
''A lot of guys said we were really young and that we couldn't get here,'' said Burke, a sophomore and the South Region's most outstanding player. ''We're here now and we still have unfinished business.''
The last time Michigan made it this far was the Fab Five era of the early 1990s, what until now had been considered the program's glory years.
Might be time to start rethinking that.
Once they got ahead Sunday, the Wolverines (30-7) maintained a double-digit against the SEC regular-season champion Gators (29-8), who lost in a regional final for the third straight year.
''We haven't gotten off the greatest of starts of late. That was a terrific start,'' Michigan coach John Beilein said. ''Just hanging in there with our defense allowed us to keep that separation.''
Stauskas scored 22 points while making all six of his 3-pointers and Burke scored 15. Mitch McGary, a 6-foot-10 freshman, had 11 points and nine rebounds.
When the game ended, Burke was among several Michigan players who went to the opposite side of the court toward Michigan fans behind press row with fingers raised. Fans were chanting, ''It's great to be a Michigan Wolverine!''
And great to be young.
The Wolverines are headed to Atlanta to play Syracuse (30-9) in a national semifinal game Saturday.
Michigan hadn't reached the Final Four since consecutive national championship game appearances in 1992 and 1993, the freshman and sophomore seasons of the Fab Five: Chris Webber, Jalen Rose, Juwan Howard, Ray Jackson and Jimmy King.
Webber was gone before that team's 1994 regional final loss to Arkansas played in the now-demolished Reunion Arena in Dallas, and Howard followed him to the NBA after that.
With four wins in this NCAA tourney, the Wolverines already have more tournament victories than their total from the end of the Fab Five era to this season. They had one win in 1998, and then didn't even make the field again until 2009.
Despite being the only team to make regional finals each of the last three seasons, the Gators haven't been to the Final Four since winning consecutive national titles in 2006 and 2007.
Kenny Boynton and Erik Murphy, the four-year seniors who came in not long after those titles, will leave without one of their own. They were part of the only Gators class to win consecutive outright SEC regular-season championships, but came up short in the biggest games.
Boynton and Will Yeguete had 13 points each for the Gators.
Florida is the first team to make it to three consecutive regional final games without winning at least one of them, according to STATS. Wyoming lost in the round of eight from 1947-49, but that stretch ended two years before the NCAA tournament expanded to more than eight teams.
The Gators were able to recover from an early deficit against Florida Gulf Coast for a 62-50 win Friday night on the raised stage at Cowboys Stadium.
It was another story facing Big Blue.
After McGary started the scoring with a layup, Stauskas made a behind-the-back pass to McGary for a slam before making his first 3-pointer less than a half-minute after that.
Burke passed to McGary for a layup before driving for one of his own. McGary's jumper made it 13-0 only 3:05 into the game.
Stauskas, who was 2-of-12 from 3-point range the first three games of this NCAA tourney, couldn't miss against the Gators.
The 6-foot-6 guard from Canada put the Wolverines up by 24 points with 4:08 left in the first half after two consecutive 3s from the left corner in a span of 27 seconds.
Like he did on all of his makes, Stauskas came back down the court with a smile on his face, sharing the moment with the Wolverines fans who made the trip to North Texas.
Florida missed its first seven shots before Will Yeguete made a layup more than 3 1/2 minutes into the game.
It was a rough finale for Murphy, who twice thought he had easy baskets in front of him only to have the shots blocked. Murphy had eight rebounds, but finished 0-of-11 shooting and was scoreless for the first time this season.
Murphy was obviously devastated, staring at the floor with slumped shoulder in the locker room after the game.
''Just missed shots,'' Murphy said, barely loud enough to be heard, and answering in short spurts. ''Our defense was bad.''
Even with an 11-2 run late in the first half punctuated by Boynton's 3-pointer, the Gators were still down by 15 with a minute to go in the first half.
And the Wolverines were able to score even after it appeared that the half had ended; Burke was already started heading off the court pumping his right arm toward the Michigan fans.
Stauskas was fouled on a 3-point attempt with 0.4 seconds left and, after officials reviewed the play, hit two free throws to give the Wolverines a 47-30 lead.
It was that kind of day for Michigan, and for Florida.
- Earthquake hits Central Maine today
- Ellsworth city manager announced today the city has hired a new police chief
- Zachary Grant pleas guilty to manslaughter
- Maine shelters get dogs from Puerto Rico
- DHHS supports funding for reopening 12 treatment beds
- Senator King honors former Senator Snowe
- UMaine students help others with tax prep
- NTSB announces second El Faro search to find missing data recorder
- Senator King to host opiate discussion in Bangor
- American seniors targeted by international drug dealers
- Two arrested on drug charges in Southern Maine
- Waterville crash sent three to hospital
- Fire breaks out at an apartment in Bangor yesterday afternoon
- James Pak sentenced to life for killing two teenaged tenants
- Leanna Norris is appealing murder conviction
- After Scalia's death, Obama has opening to shift Supreme Court balance
- Reaction to Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's death
- 3 killed, scores hospitalized after huge I-78 pileup, police say
- Multiple fatalities reported in big I-78 pileup
- 5.1 and 3.9 magnitude earthquakes recorded in Oklahoma
- New batch of Clinton emails released, 84 now marked 'classified'
- New batch of Clinton emails released, 81 now marked 'classified'
- Louisiana Dem Gov. Edwards warns: Agree to proposed tax hikes or LSU football could be sacked
- Armed-robbery suspect loses arm in botched robbery attempt in Brooklyn
- Taylor Swift's family and friends voice their support
- 5 killed when car going wrong way slams into SUV in Ohio
- Gillian Anderson refutes reports that she has had work done
- World is fighting a new Cold War, Russia's Medvedev says
- 5 reasons to skip a workout
- Two Washington state boys missing since August found safe in Mexico
- Texas recommends court ban on bite mark evidence
- Alabama grandmother convicted in girl's running death dies
- Win Butler cut off from talking politics after celebrity game MVP win
- San Francisco police shot man 20 times, including 6 in back
- Sources: FBI investigating Ohio machete attack as possible lone wolf terror act
- Northeast braces for possible 'life-threatening' cold weather
- US military deploys more Patriot missiles in South Korea
- Manhole cover crashes into SUV's windshield, killing driver
- Madeleine Albright says controversial remark at Clinton rally was wrong context at wrong time
- Rihanna Debuts New Collection For Puma
- Actress Jennifer Lawrence is donating $2 million to a Kentucky hospital after visiting
- O.J. Simpson's Former Doctor Talks Possible CTE Symptoms
- President Obama Recites Love Poem To Wife Michelle -- Watch!
- Kanye West Ignites Controversy With Taylor Swift Over New Song Lyrics
- 'The Originals': Leah Pipes On The 'Insane' Danger Cami Is In, Getting Lectured By Klaus & Elijah
- Lamar Odom Makes Public Return At Kanye West's Fashion Show
- Teresa Giudice Talks Prison Life, Reuniting With Family & Supporting Donald Trump
- Peyton Manning & Jimmy Fallon Have Fun With Eli Manning's Super Bowl Face
- [EXCLUSIVE] Bethenny Frankel Confirms She is Returning to 'RHONY'
- 'Legends Of Tomorrow': Marc Guggenheim On Ray & Snart’s Latest Mission, Training Kendra & The Omega Protocol
- Adam Levine Reacts To Taraji P. Henson’s Coldplay/Maroon 5 Mix-Up
- 'The 100 Q&A: Brenda Strong On Playing Ice Nation Queen Nia
- 'Outlander' Season 2 Premiere Date Announced
- 'Outlander' Season 2 Premiere Date Announced, New Trailer Drops
- Stars Step Out For Saint Laurent Hollywood Show
- 'Gilmore Girls' Revival Welcomes More Familiar Faces
- Gwen Stefani Teaming With Target For Live Grammy Video
- Adele Announces Surprise Pre-Grammy Concert
- 'Arrow': Katrina Law Previews 'Epic' Fight, 'Beautiful' Nyssa/Laurel Scene
- Eagles Band Members To Honor Glenn Frey At Grammys
- Johnny Depp Stars As Donald Trump In Funny Or Die Spoof
- Medical Examiner Rules Michael Cavallari's Death Accidental
- 'Frozen' Musical To Make Broadway Debut In 2018
- Tom Brady boasts that he is not one of the best QBs ever
- Peyton Manning's mom explains why it's time for her son to retire
- Report: Off-duty cops hospitalized after alleged altercation involving LeSean McCoy
- Advanced stats will probably love Michigan in 2016
- Audi tearjerker, 'Puppymonkeybaby' among Super Bowl winners
- Offbeat humor and upbeat messages dominate Super Bowl ads
- Breaking news: NASCAR to announce new 'charter' system for teams
- 2nd-seeded Cilic and Dodig advance to 2nd round in Rotterdam
- Jordan Spieth honors Peyton Manning with classic forehead joke after Super Bowl win
- Mets give cap-tip to fellow runner-up Panthers after Super Bowl loss
- Cam Newton's authenticity is highly questionable
- 2016 New York Mets Preview & Fantasy Baseball Draft Prep
- All-Star Bobblehead Series among Marlins promotions in 2016
- Broncos offseason to-do list, starting with moving on from Manning
- Cam Newton's image took the biggest hit of all during the Super Bowl
- Dodgers' Pederson had a great view of Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show
- Paul George says he'll try to score 82 points in final game vs. Kobe
- From behind the lens at Super Bowl 50, Durant captures the other side
- DeMarcus Ware's son stole Deion Sanders' microphone after the Super Bowl
- Comfort wins: Stroman, Blue Jays watch Super Bowl 50 in onesies
- Parker to play with France despite wife's pregnancy
- Ronaldo open to leaving Real Madrid when contract expires
- Tyronn Lue on recent criticism: 'Look, they ridiculed Jesus Christ'
- Bryce Harper shared a laugh with Stephen Curry at Super Bowl 50