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Next Up - Michigan

After a few years, the Wolverines return to Cameron.

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Like Duke, Michigan has some issues to work through. Aside from injuries (Mitch McGary has had a back problem and  Nik Stauskas hurt his ankle against Charlotte in Puerto Rico last week), Michigan has youth and the consistency issues that naturally arise from inexperience.

Michigan is a whisker away from being 4-3, having barely beaten Florida State, 82-80.

However, this is a team with significant talent and eventually John Beilein will get everyone pointed in the right direction.

McGary was a big Duke target, of course, and was sensational late last year. But Stauskas is the leading scorer, with 20.3 per game. An injury is obviously a big hit.

Also back is Glenn Robinson III, who you might remember jumped past Michigan's highest test mark for a vertical earlier this year.

Caris LeVert (6-6, sophomore) is getting 13.9 ppg, almost two more than Robinson's 12.1 ppg.

Derrick Walton inherits the point guard position from Trey Burke, last year's brilliant guard who is now in the NBA.

Really, that has to be the biggest difference. Remember that highlight from last year when Burke reached over someone's shoulder (we can't remember who, a Big Ten rival though), knocked the ball loose and took off for a layup?

He wasn't just good, he was charismatic. Guys like that don't come along that often and are hard to replace.

Still, as we say, Michigan has players. Remember Spike Albrecht's sensational first half against Louisville? That was beautiful to watch.

Yet, and we don't mean to demean anyone by this, as great as he was, a lot of Michigan's offensive production comes from John Beilein's remarkable offense.

Beilein is near-genius level when it comes to getting defenders to go the wrong direction, and when they do, the Wolverines are ready to strike with either a three pointer or a carefully conceived backdoor.

That's one thing. What we recall from the last time is that Michigan used the 1-3-1 zone.

Lute Olson used to run this at Arizona when he had Kenny Lofton, and we've never seen anyone run baseline to baseline like Lofton did. It was almost impossible to get behind it.

Beilein said earlier that while he hadn't used it a lot this season since he was incorporating new players, he was planning to soon.

Given Duke's struggles with zones from ECU and Vermont, we'd expect soon to be Tuesday.

For Duke, while Quinn Cook has upped his offensive game, a lot of the offense is running through Jabari Parker and Rodney Hood. Getting some other guys involved would be really healthy, particularly if Michigan stymies Duke with zone.

One thing we'd expect is to see Duke continue working hard on defensive improvement. The D made big improvements in New York and that should continue.

Given Michigan's talent, Beilein's particular gifts and Duke's youth and not fully formed defense, it will be a close game and one Duke could well lose.