No. 4 Georgia Tech Drills Michigan 99-68
ATLANTA – Georgia Tech raised its Final Four banner before the game, then played like a team that could win it all. The fourth-ranked Yellow Jackets took control with a 20-0 run, led by 27 points at halftime and went on to rout Michigan 99-68 Tuesday night in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge.
B.J. Elder scored 27 points, Will Bynum had 19 and Jarrett Jack 16 for Georgia Tech, which shot 54 percent from the field and led by as many as 35 points.
Before tipping off, the Yellow Jackets (4-0) unveiled the banner marking last season’s trip to the Final Four in San Antonio. They lost to Connecticut in the national championship game.
Clearly inspired, Georgia Tech took control about 3 minutes in. Elder got the big run started with a layup, and the Yellow Jackets fed off their stifling defense to blow out the Wolverines (3-3).
Jack and Theodis Tarver also had layups during the spurt, before Isma’il Muhammad and Elder finished it off with dunks. Michigan called two timeouts in a futile attempt to prevent things from getting out of hand.
After John Andrews’ basket pulled Michigan to 10-9, the Wolverines went more than 4 1/2 minutes without scoring. They missed nine consecutive shots and had two turnovers.
The Yellow Jackets rarely missed, winding up at 60 percent (24-of-40) in the first half in taking a 59-32 lead.
Elder was unstoppable the entire game, hitting 10 of 12 shots overall, including going 7-of-9 from outside the 3-point arc.
After easy wins over Alabama State and Arkansas-Little Rock, sandwiched around a one-point win at Illinois-Chicago, Georgia Tech easily played its best game of the season.
Michigan was at its worst. The Wolverines lost to No. 21 Arizona by one point in the semifinals of the Preseason NIT, followed by a 72-63 setback to Providence in the consolation game.
Courtney Sims had 17 points for Michigan, which had 18 turnovers and shot just 41 percent.
Georgia Tech also got some good news off the court. An MRI confirmed that touted freshman Jeremis Smith did no additional damage when he dislocated his right kneecap in last Friday’s victory over Arkansas-Little Rock.
Smith will likely be out for 6 to 12 weeks, but the Yellow Jackets feared the gruesome injury – which left Smith sprawled on the court, screaming in agony – could have been much worse.