In the first-round of the NCAA Basketball Tournament, the #3 Michigan Wolverines face the #14 Montana Grizzles on Thursday, March 15. Michigan coach John Beilein brings a lot of experience with him. He’s been a head coach in college basketball since 1978 — and with the Wolverines since 2007. Beilein is known for doing his homework, lots of it, before game time. When asked at a press conference on Sunday about his knowledge of Montana, Beilein said, “I’ll try to know as much as I can.” When a reporter laughed, Beilein said, “I guarantee you I will not be laughing.”
Montana’s coach Travis DeCuire became a head coach (at his alma mater, Montana) in 2014. It’s DeCuire’s first time at the NCAA Tournament, and the school’s first time since 2013. DeCuire told the local paper, Missoulian, the opportunity is “huge because I wanted to do it my way.” He explains: “I wanted to build the type of culture that I was comfortable with on and off the court. Sometimes when you fight for culture and how you want young men to be or become, sometimes you might end up with less talent down the road. We never gave in.” The Michigan vs. Montana game from Intrust Bank Arena in Wichita, Kansas, airs Thursday, march 15 at 9:45pm on TBS.