EAST LANSING — Isaiah Livers’ body language said more than his words, or Juwan Howard’s. He stared at the floor. His shoulders slumped. The Zoom camera captured the front of his hair and he spoke in dejected tones.
This wasn’t the look of someone who just lost a game that was meaningless on paper. Livers and Michigan will head to Indianapolis on Friday as the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten Tournament, a title they celebrated in Ann Arbor just a few days ago after a win over Michigan State that rendered Sunday’s game somewhat obsolete for the Wolverines. The sort of game where you fear an injury. And then, an injury happened.
Eli Brooks went down on a floater just after the 16-minute mark, grabbing at his left leg. Juwan Howard and trainer Alex Wong carried him off the court, the leg lifted all the way up. He reemerged in a walking boot right before the half and stayed in the locker room for much of the last 20 minutes. Besides noting that it was a left ankle injury, there was no update from Howard after the game.
“I didn’t get to see the replay, but had to be bad if Eli can’t get back out there,” Livers said. “… Hopefully we can get him back in time for the Tournament.”