The legend of Jordan Poole – and his miraculous buzzer-beating shot that kept Michigan basketball alive in the NCAA tournament – keeps growing.

Poole revealed on Tuesday another layer to the story, which makes it seem even more improbable: he had been poked in the right eye earlier in the game and had impaired vision when he hit a dramatic, last-second, 3-point shot for the win over Houston on Saturday night, sending the Wolverines into the Sweet 16.

“I got poked in the (right) eye before the end of the last game,” he said. “It was watering a little bit.”

Poole wore protective glasses on Tuesday afternoon, which he pushed up on his forehead as he talked to the media.

And yes, his eye was bothering him before taking that buzzer beater.

“It’s funny,” he said. “When I came to the bench, I said, ‘It kind of feels like my right eye has a filter on it.’ Then, I was like, ‘I gotta suck it up on this play.'”


“Would you have made the shot if you weren’t poked in the eye?” a reporter asked.

“I’m just glad I made it,” he said, smiling.

Poole’s right eye has continued to bother him, especially when going outside.

“When sunlight hits it, it feels absolutely terrible,” he said. “We’ve been working on it.”

It hasn’t been determined if Poole will wear protective glasses on Thursday when the Wolverines play Texas A&M in the Sweet 16, although the eye issue is not expected to keep him out of the game.

“If I don’t have to use them in the game, I won’t,” he said.


Since the shot, Poole has received more than 700 text messages. He’s heard from everybody from former teammates and middle school teachers to his pastors.

“It’s been cool,” Poole said. “Everybody on campus has been pretty chill about it. I get a lot of congratulations and high-fives. It’s a little wild on social media, but on campus, everybody has been pretty chill about it.”

Poole said his Instagram followers went from 27,000 to 51,000.

“On Twitter, I went from 8,000 and now I’m at 17,000,” he said.

WEST VIRGINIA: For the second straight year, a major winter storm scrambled West Virginia’s travel plans for the NCAA tournament.

About 20 hours after arriving back on campus from the West Coast, the Mountaineers left Tuesday to begin preparations for Friday’s Sweet 16 appearance in Boston against Villanova.


The storm was already churning through West Virginia on Tuesday and was heading toward New England, where up to a foot of snow was expected.

Last March the Mountaineers left a day early on a bus ahead of a snowstorm rather than risk flight delays to Buffalo, New York.

OKLAHOMA: Star freshman Trae Young is leaving for the NBA after a standout season.

The 6-foot-2 guard averaged 27.4 points and 8.7 assists this season – leading the nation in both categories – and many projections have him going early in the first round.

TEXAS: Freshman forward Mohamed Bamba is leaving school for the NBA.

Bamba is listed as 6-foot-11 with a wingspan of 7-9. He averaged 12.9 points and 10.5 rebounds. He also set a Texas season record for blocks with 111 in 30 games as Texas when 19-15 and lost in the first round of the NCAA tournament.


IOWA: The dismantling of Iowa’s underperforming roster began Tuesday, as reserves Brady Ellingson and Ahmad Wagner announced that they were leaving the program.

The school says Ellingson, a redshirt junior, will graduate in May and seek to play a year as a graduate transfer at another school, while Wagner says he wants to give football a shot after three seasons playing basketball for the Hawkeyes. He hasn’t decided whether to stay at Iowa or play football at another school.


ATTENDANCE: Attendance for the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament is the highest in a decade, with an average of 5,067 fans taking in the first 48 games.

Defending champion South Carolina led the way with 11,085 fans at the Gamecocks’ opening-round win. SEC rival Mississippi State followed with 10,211 in the opener on its home court.

NCAA basketball officials are hoping for more strong numbers at the regionals this weekend in Albany, New York; Kansas City, Missouri; Spokane, Washington; and Lexington, Kentucky. Albany has already sold nearly 7,600 tickets.


Last season’s regionals were at a 20-year low for attendance.

The Final Four is in Columbus, Ohio.

VIRGINIA: Coach Joanne Boyle says she is retiring because of a family matter.

The school did not provide details on the family matter in its announcement Tuesday. Boyle’s retirement comes only days after the Cavaliers were knocked out of the NCAA tournament with a second-round loss to defending national champion South Carolina.

The 54-year-old Boyle spent seven seasons at Virginia, compiling a 129-98 record, including 19-14 this year. The NCAA appearance was the program’s first in nine seasons.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.