I am higher on the Spartans than most people on here. I think that somehow Izzo is going to get this team to win games. I think that Valentine and Dawson are going to be two very good players. Michigan State loses Dan Chapman, Adreian Payne, and Keith Appling to graduation. In addition, Gary Harris is leaving for the NBA. Also, Russell Byrd is foregoing his final year of elgibility. Losing these players means losing:
Now this is quite a lot to lose but it could be worse. They could have three players going pro like other teams in the conference. Here is the catch, Alex Gauna has not decided if he is going to take his fifth year. And although he is not a starter, he is an important role-player. Here is what they lose if he leaves.
Not only do they lose some real minutes, they lose valuable experience. This player is not going to be all B1G but losing him means losing serious depth. Here is what their roster looks like:
# Name HT WT YR POS
15 Keenan Wetzel 6-4 210 RS.SR SG
Only played 22 minutes all of last year, will not play.
2 Alex Gauna 6-9 250 RS.SR C
Played 7 minutes a game last year. He will get about 10 minutes a game this year unless he decides not to take his fifth year.
20 Travis Trice 6-0 170 SR. PG
The starting Point Guard, candidate for "alien of the year". He averaged 22 minutes a game last year when Keith was being tough and he will get about 30 this year. He should be their 3rd option to score this year.
22 Branden Dawson 6-6 225 SR. PF
Branden is arguably their best player. He may not be a scorer but he is a man on the boards and a very good defender. He will start at Power Forward. If Dan Dakich does not break Dawson's hand again then he should be on track for all B1G.
41 Colby Wollenman 6-7 225 RS.JR SF
Will not play.
45 Denzel Valentine 6-5 225 JR. SF
The starting Small Forward, will be their go-to scorer. If he plays to his full ability he could be a lock to go to the NBA. Frontrunner for the "Needs Braces" team.
10 Matt Costello 6-9 240 JR. C
The starting Center, could be pretty good next year and a more than servicable starter.
13 Trevor Bohnhoff 6-7 215 JR. PF
Will not play.
30 Kenny Kaminski 6-8 225 RS.SO PF
A three point shooter, will pick up odd minutes at the 3-5.
34 Gavin Schilling 6-9 225 SO. C
An uber athletic fouling machine. He picks up 8 fouls every 40 minutes, which is good for him fouling out in 25 minutes. Not good. He will pick up minutes.
3 Alvin Ellis III 6-4 195 SO. SG
The biggest mystery on their team, he only played 7 minutes a game last year. I think he will start later on in the year. Early in the year I think Valentine will slide down with Dawson at the three and Kaminski at the 4.
Lourawls Nairn 5-10 170 FR. PG
A four star, the #15 Point Guard in this class. He will be the back-up 1 this year.
Javon Bess 6-5 195 FR. SG
A three star, the #20 Shooting Guard in this class. He will back-up Ellis at the 2.
Marvin Clark 6-7 219 FR. PF
A three star, the #40 Power Forward in this class. He will be the back-up 3.
Projected Starting Lineup:
Point Guard: Travis Trice
Shooting Guard: Alvin Ellis III
Small Forward: Denzel Valentine
Power Forward: Branden Dawson
Center: Matt Costello
Losing Gauna would make this team worse than Michigan, but with him, MSU barely has the edge. I think State will go 4th in the B1G and 12-6 in the conference.
Next up... Ohio State
Well, all of you are quite familiar with Michigan for obvious reasons so I will keep this brief. Michigan loses Jordan Morgan to graduation, Jon Horford to transfer and Nik Stauskas, Glenn Robinson III, and Mitch McGary to the NBA. This means losing:
That is the most to replace out of all of the teams so far. So what does the roster look like for next year?
# Name HT WT YR POS
44 Max Bielfeldt 6-7 245 RS.JR PF
With Calves as big as a house, and a shot selection worse than bad, Max is by far the oldest player on the team. According to Beilein, nobody can guard him. If that is true, we could be in for another ride this year. It is not, which is very likely he will play 5 minutes a game. Beilein could have meant that none of the coaches can guard him, or that he is very good 2K player.
23 Caris LeVert 6-6 185 JR. SG
Our go-to guy, will pick up some of the possesions left behind by Nik. There is no reason to be believe Caris cannot do the what Nik did if not more. He averaged 12.9 points per game last year so 15 is not unrealistic is it? The starting Shooting Guard.
14 Brad Anlauf 6-4 195 JR. SG
A football walk-on that decided to do basketball instead. Hopefully there will be a lot of opportunities for him to play this season.
2 Spike Albrecht 5-11 175 JR. PG
An experienced back-up Point Guard is a rare thing to have, and we have one this year. He may get the start early in the year next to Walton to ease the freshmen in.
34 Mark Donnal 6-9 230 RS. FR. C
The player that most likely makes or breaks this season. Can he hold his own in B1G play? Can he do more than that? As long as he holds his own Michigan will finish where I have them here. Starting Center.
21 Zak Irvin 6-6 200 SO. SF
After news that he is staying in Ann Arbor for the summer came out, people are pretty much guaranteeing that Irvin will have a Stauskas esque jump. If that happens, Michigan is golden, if not, we will still be fine. Starting Small Forward.
20 Sean Lonnergan 6-5 195 SO. SF
Walk-on with some bounce. I truly think he will be playing real minutes his senior year.
12 Cole McConnell 6-5 200 SO. SF
Walk-on coming off of a broken leg, probably will not do much.
10 Derrick Walton Jr. 6-1 185 SO. PG
Another player staying in Ann Arbor. Nobody expects him to be Sophmore Trey Burke, or even freshman Trey, but he will be good. Starting Point Guard.
5 Andrew Dakich 6-2 185 SO. PG
The best bench celebrater in the country, will most likely continue his cheerleading ways.
Kameron Chatman 6-7 197 FR. PF
I have Chatman starting at Power Forward which really is not that bad. GR3 did it for two years at 6-6 I think we can make due. He is a 4 star and the #11 Small Forward.
Ricky Doyle 6-9 255 FR. C
It would have been ideal for Horford to stay and Doyle get a redshirt, but that is not going to happen. Doyle will be a bench guy that takes about 15 minutes a game. A three star, the #22 Center.
D.J. Wilson 6-8 215 FR. PF
Holy long batman, finally a shot blocker! He will pick up some spare minutes at the 4 and three. Another three star #41 Power Forward.
Aubrey Dawkins 6-4 175 FR. SG
A three star from prep school. I think he will redshirt.
Muhammad Ali Abdur-Rahkman 6-4 FR. SG
A two-star the #102 SG. Most likely a diamond in the rough. He should get about 10 minutes a game.
Austin Hatch 6-6 210 FR. SG
One of the saddest stories ever, Hatch should get a medical scholarship he is a one star and the #141 Small Forward. Most likely will never play.
Projected Starting Line-up:
Point Guard: Derrick Walkton Jr.
Shooting Guard: Caris LeVert
Small Forward: Zak Irvin
Power Forward: Kameron Chatman
Center: Mark Donnal
More information can be found in Brian' post which is really well done. I think Michigan will finish in 5th place goin 11-7.
Next up... Michigan State
TL;DR version - what are your expectactions for the 2013 WRs who seem (as best as we can tell with limited info and youth) on pace to be crowded out by the 2012s and Canteen (maybe Harris) in the 2014s.
Long version below:
Prefacing this by saying (a) we get almost no information out of Fort Schembechler and (b) these are still babies in football terms and (c) their rankings are 3 star-ish but you do expect some decent contribution from 3 stars - what should our expectations be for the 3 WRs in the 2013 class? I hear very little talk about them.
Assuming Funchess doesn't go to the NFL after this year, there appears to be a squeeze for playing time with
- Darboh (2012) presumably the starter across from Gallon pre-injury
- Chesson (2012) a player who was probably thrown to the wolves a year early last year due to need but should take a decent step up now that he has his feet wet
- "All Spring Team" (2014) Freddy Canteen
- Much heralded (2014) Drake Harris who may be served best by redshirting, getting that hamstring settled and putting on 20 lbs to his lanky 6'4 frame ... or not.
I am assuming at this point Ways RS this year, but above you either have 4 WRs who seem to be above any of the 2013 class as best as we can tell (or 5 if Harris does not RS). Eventually Funchess moves on either in a year or two and in will come Harris and Ways.
At this point are these going to be role players who are the 4th/5th type WRs in their JR and SR years or do we have upside hopes for them? Jones seems to be the one you hear a little talk about and he did not his RS lifted so maybe he was the most ready of the 3 to contribute.
To refresh - I am using MGoBlog Hello posts, along with Magnus. (EDIT - I used starz from Magnus site which was at time of committment) This was the class that UM went hard at Laquon Treadwell only to be rejected late.
 Da'Mario Jones
ESPN: 3-star WR, 78, #77 WR
Scout: 3-star WR, #77 WR
247: 3-star WR, #152 WR
Jones is the only receiver in this class who looks like he could find a home in the slot. Since the only other slot receivers slated to be on the roster next year—Jeremy Gallon and The Threat—will both be seniors, Jones could find himself with a role early on in his career. With Gallon and Dileo around in 2013 and Jones needing a fair amount of development, I expect him to take a redshirt year, but after that he should have a shot to see the field.
Magnus - rating 81:
Jones seems to be a quality addition to the team, and while he doesn't look like a superstar, he looks like a very adequate addition to the receiver class. He has more big-play ability than the other two receivers currently committed, Jaron Dukes and Csont'e York. He reminds me a bit of Darryl Stonum, although lacking the same top-end speed.
 Csont'e York
ESPN: Unranked WR
Rivals: Unranked WR
Scout: 3-star WR, #67 WR
247 Sports: 3-star WR, 88 grade, #69 WR
The evidence is flimsy indeed, but York appears to fall into the same general category as Dukes: solid floor given his good size and hands, limited star potential due to a lack of top-end speed. Like Dukes, York will have every opportunity to see the field when he steps on campus thanks to Michigan's depth.... Given York's current under-the-radar status, it's foolish to attempt to project beyond him having a shot to see the field.
Magnus - rating 79:
York is tall, long, lean, and can jump. He has good straight-line speed and gets on top of corners pretty quickly, which makes them panic a little bit. This will not only help him threaten deep, but it should also be an asset for setting up corners for shorter routes; he'll get them to flip their hips, he can throttle down, and then come back for a dig, hitch, or comeback. York goes up and gets the ball well, which should make him a very tough red zone threat. I am also impressed with York's routes. On the negative side, York does not seem to be a threat to run much after the catch. While he accelerates well and can threaten deep when unimpeded, he doesn't seem to have an extra gear.
 Jaron Dukes
ESPN: Unranked WR
Rivals: Unranked WR
Scout: Unranked WR
247 Sports: 3-star WR, 87 grade
The evidence is flimsy indeed, but Dukes—like every receiver from the 2012 and 2013 class—is going to have every opportunity to compete for playing time right away. When Dukes arrives on campus, the Wolverines will have just six returning wideouts....and the only players with even comparable size are Jackson and Chesson, who both stand at 6'3".
That said, Dukes is a developmental prospect, and it seems likely he'll take a redshirt year as long as the Wolverines don't suffer attrition, especially if they can bring in a blue-chip prospect like Laquon Treadwell in the 2013 class. Dukes appears to be a late-bloomer—he told me his coaches said he "couldn't catch a cold" as a freshman—so there's a chance he makes a big leap up in the rankings and changes that opinion. With little film to go on, for now I see him as another Hemingway type; a big receiver who uses his body well and is a deep threat by virtue of his size and leaping ability, but not a burner who's going to be a steady possession receiver.
Magnus - rating 59:
I've said before that Dukes reminds me a bit of Ernest Wilford, the former Virginia Tech and Jacksonville Jaguars receiver. He's not going to outrun anyone unless they try to tackle him and bounce harmlessly to the turf. It's easy to outrun people when they're lying on the ground. But hey, those kinds of skills turned into some big-time receptions for Junior Hemingway because Denard Robinson would just chuck the ball downfield and the 6'1", 225-ish Hemingway would outmuscle smaller and weaker defensive backs. Dukes probably isn't in danger of becoming the next Calvin Johnson, but if Michigan gets some red zone touchdowns or Hail Mary receptions out of him, it will be worth it.
I thought it might be interesting to look at who contributed the most along certain metrics to the success of Wolverines basketball this past season.
Admittedly, I wasn’t sure what people might like to see, so I dumped the season stats for the team into Excel and looked at things such as field goals made, three point shots made, rebounds, assists and a few other metrics to get a feel for relative total contributions. The results probably would not shock many here, but they are interesting to see in this form all the same.
I shall apologize in advance for the pie charts (out of style, I know), but it seemed like the most convenient way to display something like “relative contribution” for various statistics in this particular instance.
FIELD GOALS MADE:
Below is the chart showing relative contributions, but you’re probably not shocked at all by this one. Nik Stauskas, Glenn Robinson III and Caris LeVert combined for 56% of all of Michigan’s made field goals.
THREE POINTERS MADE:
This is also something that you might have guessed too – Zak Irvin, Nik Stauskas and Glenn Robinson III were far and away the most prolific contributors to Michigan’s three-point game, combining for 67% of all that were made.
Here is the contribution of total points – if you look back at field goals made, you will see a similarity, of course. Those 56% of field goals among those same three players accounts for about 58% of all of Michigan’s points this past season.
Total rebounds probably is not as interesting as relative percentages adjusted for minutes, but below you can see the raw data. Jordan Morgan and Jon Horford were about a third of all of Michigan’s rebounds regardless of whether they were offensive or defensive.
If we talk about this in terms of percentages and adjust it as we normally would for minutes played, we see an interesting shift. The best rebounder on the team – both offensive and defensive – becomes Mitch McGary, then Morgan and Horford.
Nearly two-thirds of Michigan’s assists came from a slightly different trio – Nik Stauskas, Caris LeVert and Derrick Walton Jr.
ASSIST / TURNOVER RATIO:
I didn’t adjust this one, but it doesn’t tell us anything much different that the chart of total assists for those who played major minutes. It does say, however, that when Albrecht was in, he was definitely in and very sure-handed indeed.
SOME MUSIC FROM MY COLLECTION... ...to enjoy (or not) as you read (SFW).
This is the point where the order of the standings gets even more blurry. With Michigan losing all of their players and Ohio State getting every transfer in college basketball, it is hard to predict. Because I am a homer I am gonna put Iowa here. Now Iowa was a team last year that could have finished first or 10th depending on the night. Towards the end of the season Iowa completely faded and went on a losing streak. Iowa loses Zack Novak esque Zach McCabe, Roy Devyn Marble, Melsahn Basabe, Darius Stokes, and Kyle Meyer. This means losing:
That is quite a lot to replace, here is what they bring back:
# Name HT WT YR POS
30 Aaron White 6-9 220 SR. PF
Probably Iowa's best player to be, he is their starting Power Forward. He is surprisingly athletic and if he can fix his shot, second team all B1G is not out of the question. This will be his team.
23 Okey Utah 6-6 210 SR. SF
May play in ten plus games this year, but will not be needed at the 2 or 3 unless foul trouble or injuries happens.
0 Gabriel Olaseni 6-10 225 SR. C
The 6th man, came on towards the end of last year. Will probably get 20 plus minutes this year.
2 Josh Oglesby 6-5 208 SR. SG
The sharpshooting Shooting Guard, Oglesby picked up well after getting injured early last year. He will take quite a bit of their shots this year.
13 Kyle Denning 6-1 160 SR. PG
If he plays in every game this year I will be shocked.
34 Adam Woodbury 7-1 245 JR. C
The starting Center, will play the other half of what Olaseni does not take. There are not many players in the frontcourt, he has a chance to emerge.
20 Jarrod Uthoff 6-9 208 JR. SF
The starting Small Forward, is probably their third best three point shooter. Will do some things good and most things ok.
10 Mike Gesell 6-1 190 JR. PG
The starting Point Guard, will most likely make a pretty large jump since he has been starting for 2 years.
5 Anthony Clemmons 6-1 190 JR. PG
The back-up one and two, disappointed some last year. Could make a jump and jump into the starting line-up, bumping Uthoff out.
3 Peter Jok 6-6 200 SO. SF
The back-up Small Forward, only played 3% of their minutes last year and I do not see a huge bump.
1 Trey Dickerson 6-2 180 SO. PG
Will be the third string Point guard and maybe the third string Shooting Guard. He is from Juco.
25 Dominique Uhl 6-7 185 FR. PF
A three star, the number 52 Power Forward in the country, not impressive for a player that needs to come in and give 10 minutes a game.
22 Brady Ellington 6-3 170 FR. SG
A two star, the number 98 Shooting Guard in the country, that is not good for Iowa. They need him for about 5 to 10 minutes a game and he does not look to be polished.
Here is the projected starting line-up:
Point Guard: Mike Gesell
Shooting Guard: Josh Oglesby
Small Forward: Jarrod Uthoff
Power Forward: Aaron White
Center: Adam Woodbury
Michigan plays Iowa at home next year. It could be a relatively easy game as Iowa can play amazing or horrible on any given night.
This is a pretty experienced team that does not have much depth. I have them this high because a seven man rotation can still actually do some damage. I think Iowa will go 10-8 in the B1G Ten next year which is good enough for 6th place.
Next up... Michigan
Lacrosse: An Analysis of Growth (and Contraction) - Former Div. 1 Programs
For the lacrosse nerds on the board…Many in the lacrosse world believe Michigan’s decision to field a varsity team will be monumental for the future growth of the game. With Michigan in its 3rd season of varsity play and other new programs coming on strong, I thought it would be interesting to analyze the sport’s former geographic footprint.
Lacrosse fans like to speculate on the next big athletic program to add the sport. Interestingly enough, lacrosse has been an NCAA-sanctioned varsity sport at a number of big-time athletic schools that no longer field a varsity team. I have a theory that schools that formerly fielded varsity teams may be in the best position to bring it back. In some cases, the sport died when the coaches who brought it there retired. In others, football-focused ADs were reluctant to continue the sport in the 70s and 80s, largely due to budgetary constraints. Title IX also leveled serious blows to programs. So lets look at a few of those schools and examine the pros and cons of re-instituting their programs. (***Keep in mind, money and Title IX compliance are the primary factors holding back lacrosse. Last year, Inside Lacrosse sent a survey to dozens of athletic departments about possibly adding the sport at the men’s level. Only a handful responded and none of them said they were considering it.***)
FBS Schools with a history of lacrosse
The obvious choice for the next big shoe to drop in D-1 expansion is Michigan State. State had a varsity program for a long time with decent success, making the tournament a few times as the designated ‘western team’ only to be stomped by the likes of Syracuse. In ‘95, officials from the athletic department informed the team to pack uptheir shit and get out - they were all cut. They couldn’t even keep their jerseys. The decision was a shame; Sparty was good and today would probably be on par with ND, Ohio and PSU.
Bring it Back:
- Past success and decent success at the club level.
- Growing talent base in its own backyard.
- Rivals ND, Ohio, and Big Brother will be powers soon so why not Sparty?
Why It Won’t happen:
- They dropped it for a reason - $ and Title IX.
- Michigan’s rough transition so far.
VT had a program back in the day with a serious schedule and a certain degree of success. VT was granted “associate status” by the NCAA in the early 1970s which was meant to foster the growth of the sport. While fellow associates Duke and UNC moved forward, VT abruptly dropped lacrosse in the 1970s and it has successfully continued as a club squad. VT is a big public university with lots of resources. Plus, there is probably a ton of talent on campus already, which could make for a smooth transition if they ever decide to make the move.
Bring it Back:
- The state is an incredibly fertile recruiting ground.
- Can offer in-state tuition to non-scholarship kids from Northern Va.
- ACC lacrosse would love to have them, giving the conference an AQ (like it matters).
- $ & Title IX.
- UVA’s problems with lacrosse image could make the Hokies reluctant. - Its in the middle of butt-f***ing nowhere, making traveling a pain.
- After Syracuse joined the ACC in 2011, VTs AD Jim Weaver said the school had no plans to add the sport. “We have a club program, that’s fine”.
The Wolfpack only had a squad for 10 years but in that short timeframe they went to the then-8-team NCAA tournament, had a few top-15 finishes and boasted one of the most prolific scorers of all time (Stan Cockerton who is still up there in NCAA record books). Not only did they have Cockerton, but Tim Nelson transferred to ‘Cuse and became one of their all time greats after NC State dropped the program. The university hit some budget troubles in the early 80s and shuttered the team, citing travel costs, expenses and lack of interest. Here’s a great history of the program.
Bring it Back:
- Not only were they good back in the day, they were legit.
- They’re the missing piece in the Duke-UNC-NC State Triangle of Hatred.
- Another addition to the ACC.
- Relatively warm weather climate. Night spring games vs Duke, UNC, UVA.
-With more teams down South now, travel should be cheaper than it was in the 80s.
- $. While travel is cheaper it still costs a lot to transport 40+ dudes around the east coast and midwest.
- Is there sufficient interest today?
- Rivals Duke & UVA’s lacrosse scandals.
I understand why BC dropped its program in 2002 but for the life of me, could never figure out why they weren’t good. New England is full of solid public school programs and powerful prep academies and BC attracts tons of kids from New Jersey and Long Island so finding talent shouldn’t have been a problem. UMass is good and Harvard is no slouch - so why couldn’t BC get its shit together? For whatever reason, they couldn’t recruit and they sucked. BC lacrosse was a casualty of Title IX and an easy decision for the athletic department.
Bring it Back:
- Academic reputation should attract recruits.
-Private school with lots of $ and rich alums.
- Archrival BU has a team now. ACC membership.
- With dozens of teams within a 6 hour bus ride, travel costs should be minimal.
-Only cut it 12 years ago for Title IX. Is there enough money and interest to bring it back now?
-Frigid. February & March lacrosse in Boston sounds miserable.
LIke NC State, BGSU had a team for only a few years but it was badass. In the 60s and 70s, Bowling Green won over 75% of its games (including an undefeated season), produced several All-Americans and had a bunch of top-20 finishes. Mickey Cochrane, the program’s legendary coach ranks among the winningest coaches in NCAA history in any division. The program was unceremoniously dropped in the 70s and I haven’t been able to find out why.
Bring it Back:
- Lacrosse is growing in Ohio and the Buckeye State is producing good talent.
- Can possibly check Ohio State’s lacrosse hegemony in the state.
- The usual: $ & Title IX. BG is your quintessential mid-major so most of its limited athletic resources will go to football and women’s sports.
- While interest is growing, is there enough to field a team?
Arizona. Yes, Arizona had a varsity Division 1 lacrosse team in the 1960s and 70s, largely due to a strong Long Island influence. The LaxCats (yuck), still with a distinctive LI flavor, were one of Michigan’s big club rivals.
Georgia Tech. The Ramblin’ Wreck’s varsity program was sidelined by...the Great Depression.
Butler. The Bulldogs were a pleasant surprise when they added lacrosse in the 90s, a time when more schools were dropping the sport than adding it. But, it was an unpleasant surprise when they dropped it in 2007.
Morgan State. Morgan State, the historically black college in Baltimore has an awesome lacrosse history. College lacrosse needs a Morgan State pretty bad. Plus, its literally down the block from Hopkins and Loyola. But, the hurdles to NCAA status are the same that shut it down in the first place - department support and resources.
Personally, I think the NCAA should reform its competition structure to help expand regional, non-revenue sports, like lacrosse, volleyball, wrestling, etc. I would love to see them revive “associate” status and offer it to club teams like Michigan State, Virginia Tech and Colorado. But, as far as we can tell, none of the above teams are planning to add lacrosse and the NCAA will not be changing anything soon. In my lifetime I hope to witness the spread of the game so one day Michigan will be in the Final 4 with Oklahoma State, Gonzaga and Miami, but for now I’ll just have to dream...