Michigan focused on 'just playing basketball'

Posted at 4:31 PM, Mar 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-16 17:45:51-04

Even though it helped them gain a new perspective, Michigan is trying hard to put the scary events from last week behind them and focus on playing the game they love.

"I'm not going to lose that perspective this time, and so I hope that transcends to the team. We just have to be loose and go play," said coach John Beilein ahead of Thursday's open practice.

Multiple players on the team spoke about their desire to put the plane accident behind them and focus on the joy of playing basketball on this stage.

"Coach B had told us all year that we play at our best when our backs are against the wall and this is the epitome of that," said senior guard Duncan Robinson.

Coach Beilein said the players can't be "basketball robots" and he thinks what happened on their way to the Big Ten Championship tournament helped -- in a roundabout way -- get them focused and thinking on the court.

Michigan will play their first round game against Oklahoma State Friday at 12:15pm.