According to the Freep (via UMHoops.com), Carlton Brundidge, Michigan's first commitment of the 2011 class ("Hello" post here) has now signed and faxed his letter of intent to the Michigan basketball offices. Brundidge joins Trey Burke who signed his LOI last week.
Brundidge faxed his letter of intent to the Michigan basketball offices this morning, making his commitment official. Here’s Brundidge’s statement on his signing and explanation of the delay (per Detroit Free Press):
“It means a lot,” Brundidge told the Free Press. “My sister went to the school, and I like going to a program that’s improving. I want to build up Michigan. I want to be the person who helps build it up.”
He said when his father got home during the weekend, they discussed the letter, made certain it was the right decision and moved forward. “He said, ‘Carlton, are you ready to do this?’ I said, ‘Yeah, I was waiting for you,’” Brundidge recalled.
“Carlton is a physically strong, attacking combo guard that will add toughness and offensive punch to our lineup,” said [Michigan Coach John] Beilein. “He is a leader and a winner that loves to compete. We love the fact that we have added another outstanding in-state player to our program, and value the loyalty Carlton has demonstrated throughout his recruiting process. We are thrilled with his decision to become a Michigan Wolverine.”
Welcome, Carlton and thanks for making this official so this guy doesn't have to "feel like a neurotic girlfriend" anymore. Also, excellent Facebook stalking to this guy. Well done to all concerned.
Much speculation that since Michigan lost the Amir Williams sweepstakes, they'll bank one scholarship for use in the 2012 class. UMHoops.com's 2012 recruiting hotboard resides here and its very useful Scholarship Breakdown page is here.
[Edited to make it clear that the Amir Williams decision is firm. H/T Raoul.]
Beilein's seat is declared hot here:
Fair or not? Discuss.
If I recall correctly he was hired just after the '07 season. Benzing aside, this recruiting class looks really weak in retrospect, at least by Big Ten standards:
Of course, I realize that Cronin is unavailable. I'm not sure he was destined to be future All-American, though. As well, I think Benzing was an administrative long shot.
I also don't know much about recruiting cycles for basketball. Because of timing issues, it might not be fair to judge that class too harshly.
He has done better since then, and I'd be inclined to give him more time (two seasons at least). He's more of a system coach than most and he might need a full roster of "his guys."
Tom Wywrot of U-M Athletics Department Media Relations provides this Q&A with Manny Harris at MGoBLue.com. Harris, who made the Cleveland Cavaliers roster as an undrafted free agent provides some interesting insights into his mindset. Here are the questions and a few of his answers. See the rest at the link.
"The whole process, I knew it was going to be a grind. I knew that in my circumstances, I'd have to open some eyes. My whole mindset was to work hard regardless of what happened. You have to work hard until you get there. That means spending extra time in the gym, extra time running, doing whatever you can until you make it. I still don't feel like I've made it yet. I am one step closer to my dream, though. I'm doing pretty well."
- What's the most difficult part about adapting your game from college to pro?
- How did you feel when you learned you made the team?
- Are there any similarities to Coach Scott's offensive scheme and Coach Beilein's here at Michigan?
- What advice would you share with future players about the mindset it takes to make an NBA roster?
- A few of your former teammates are still here at Michigan preparing for the season, any advice to those guys?
- Looking back on your decision to enter the draft, what type of mindset did you have to reach your goals?
- Did you use the fact that you weren't selected in the draft as extra motivation to make this team?
"Definitely, I felt like I was a guy who was better than some of the guys that were taken in the draft. But at the same time, I don't make those decisions. I knew I'd have to continue to work hard and use that as my motivation."
- What about the Cavaliers was attractive?
- What number will you be wearing?
- How did your experiences as a Wolverine under John Beilein prepare you for the Cavs experience?
"I wouldn't say it prepared me for the Cavaliers, but it prepared me for anything I would have done after Michigan. It was a great experience, even if I wasn't still playing basketball. The University of Michigan as a whole developed me as a person. I can't really explain it, but it made me a better man."
- Now that you are part of the team, what are the general feelings surrounding the Cavaliers post-LeBron James?
- What does making it this far mean to you?
"I'll know the answer to that question once I establish longevity in this league. It feels good right now, but at the same time, I know anything can happen. It's that sense of urgency. I haven't done anything yet. I just have to continue to do things and as I have success in this league, it will hit me more. I'm just going to continue to get better, work as hard as I can and let everything pan out."
It sure does appear that Manny has his head screwed on straight. Best of luck to him.
Are you aching for a forum to ask Coach Rodriguez and Coach Beilein a direct question? If you are, you now have an official MGoBlue.com corporate sponsored (Tim Hortons) forum managed by Michigan's marketing firm IMG College/Michigan Sports Marketing to do just that.
If you are the lucky contributor who submits the question that is selected to be asked on "Inside Michigan Football" (August-November) or "Inside Michigan Basketball" (November-March), you will also win a fabulous prize from Tim Hortons! Of course, the catch is that you have to provide said corporate sponsor and its promotional partners with your contact info, but that's a small price to pay for the opportunity to have your sponsored question posed to RichRod or Coach B.
SPONSOR: The "Tim Hortons Coffee with the Coach" (the "Sweepstakes") is sponsored by Tim Hortons (the "Sponsor"). IMG College/Michigan Sports Marketing, University of Michigan, and the University of Michigan Athletic Department are not sponsors.
4. HOW TO ENTER: Complete an electronic Entry Form by visiting MGoBlue.com. Click on Tim Hortons' 180"x150" pixel tile ad featured on the bottom of MGoBlue.com. On the entry form you must provide your complete name, address, city, state, zip code, daytime and nighttime telephone number, email address, and you must confirm that you have read and agree to the Official Rules. You must also submit a question that you would like answered on the "Inside Michigan Football" TV Coach's Show (August 26, 2010- November 26, 2010) and "Inside Michigan Basketball" TV Coach's Show (December 10, 2010- March 2, 2011).
5. PRIZES/APPROXIMATE RETAIL VALUE (ARV): Twenty-seven (27) winners will be selected. One (1) winner will be selected each week (August 23, 2010- March 14, 2011). Their question will be featured on either the "Inside Michigan Football" or "Inside Michigan Basketball" TV Coach's Show. Each winner will also receive a prize pack compliments of Tim Hortons including: one (1) $10 Tim Hortons' Gift Card and one (1) co-branded Michigan/ Tim Hortons t-shirt (ARV $20).
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Ask away and enjoy the taste of quality coffee and baked goods from Tim Hortons, Ontario's answer to Dunkin' Donuts.
Dave Brandon takes on several topics in this three part interview with Rob White of isportsweb.
- Part 1: Brandon talks about how things have gone during his first 6 months on the job, the influence his father has had on him, Rich Rodriguez, and what he would say to fans who are worried about the Michigan vs. Ohio State game being moved from the last week of the regular season.
- Selected Q&A:
isportsweb: Do you see any similarities between Bo Schembechler and Rich Rodriguez?
David Brandon: Yes, I would tell you that the intensity that Rich brings to the job and specifically to the practice field and sidelines reminds me a lot of Bo. Rich is a very intense guy, very demanding, high expectations. Very similar to what I remember in terms of how Bo approached leading the team and Bo had a system. He had a belief in here is the way you attack defenses and here is how you defeat teams and here is the formula for success and believe me Rich has a very disciplined approach to what you need to do, what those things are that you need to do to achieve success within the system of priorities that he set. The guy is a great coach. You just have to look at the record, things that he has accomplished with the teams that he has coached. He’s not a new guy. He has been a head coach for 22 years or something like that and he has been in coaching for longer than that. This is a highly experienced, successful, proven football coach.
isportsweb: What would you say to fans that are upset about the possibility of “The Game” (Michigan vs. Ohio State) being moved from the last week of the season?
David Brandon: The first thing I tell them is it hasn’t been moved yet. The amount of misinformation that is floating around relative to what is going on in the Big Ten is really quite remarkable. People read something and they believe it’s fact. With all due respect to you guys there are a lot of people in the media who make a living throwing stuff out there not knowing if it’s really true or not, being provocative and trying to raise debate and they’ve effectively done that, but there are a lot of people who just accept it as fact.
The whole new model of the Big Ten is still something that is being deliberated and it’s being vetted among all the constituents that have a seat at the table and we’re trying to figure it out. What I’ve been and I’ll keep saying is get ready for change. You cannot add a team like Nebraska, go to a 12 team league, divide it up into two divisions, implement a playoff structure for those divisional champions to play for the championship of the conference and for at trip to the Rose Bowl, you can’t implement all that and have there be no change. Every school, every program is going to experience some level of change. Nobody is going to get everything they want because if everybody did we wouldn’t change anything. Because a lot of people, what they want is no change. All I’ve been telling people is there are various scenarios if this happens here are the consequences if that happens here’s the consequences. I’ve made it really clear some of the perspectives that I bring to it. There are things that I think make a lot sense and there are other things that trouble me about various scenarios and I’ve been very public about it because I have no problem letting people know what my opinion is, but I am neither the commissioner of the Big Ten, nor do I get more than 1/12th of the vote. This is really a team exercise of trying to find consensus among a variety of strong leaders all of whom are trying to protect their own interests and we’ll see where it all lands.
- Part 2: Brandon discusses Michigan’s global brand, his favorite moments with non football or basketball teams, plans to install permanent lights at the Big House, and his thoughts on the 2010 Michigan Football team.
- Selected Q&A:
isportsweb: How big is next Saturday (UConn game) for this program and the school?
David Brandon: It’s big. I was taught as a student-athlete here that when you look at the schedule, Bo used to actually take the schedule and he would color the games in red, he called them red-letter games. Those were the games that as Bo described it, every game is important, but those games are more important. They became key games for us to achieve our goals as a team. What was interesting about that was Michigan State was always a red-letter game, Ohio State was always a red-letter game, there may be another opponent that was highly ranked that he would make a red-letter game and the first game was always a red-letter game. It doesn’t matter who you are playing, that first time you take the field to set the tone for the season there are a lot of unknowns, you haven’t played a game yet. Bo always felt that first game was a red-letter game, it’s exceedingly important. You either get off to a good start or a not so good start. So to that extent I would always tell you that no matter who you are playing, no matter what kind of team you’ve got, no matter what kind of momentum you bring into the game that first game of the season is always going to be a really important game.
The fact that UConn is as big and as tough as they are and people are picking them to win the Big East, you know a Top 25 kind of team. The fact that they bring all that to the game just makes it a bigger test than maybe we thought it was going to be when we scheduled them. That’s ok because our team is going to know when they take the field they are going to be knocking heads with a very high quality team and they are going to have to earn victory. UConn will not go out there and fumble the ball around and make a bunch of mistakes and hand us a victory. If we win we are going to win because we beat them. Players know that and they are practicing accordingly and they are preparing accordingly and that’s a good thing. We’ll see early on how we meet a significant test in our first game.
- Part 3: Brandon talks about the winged helmet, John Beilein, the Director’s Cup, and what it means to be a Michigan Man.
- Selected Q&A:
isportsweb: What does it mean to be a Michigan Man?
David Brandon: Probably the real answer is it’s a little bit like the Supreme Court said about pornography, you know it when you see it. I think everybody has a little bit different definition. My definition of a Michigan Man or Woman is somebody who is completely dedicated and devoted to this program and this department because of their connection whether it be because they went to school here, because they played here, or because they coached here. What I mean by complete dedication is that includes both in good times and in bad. It’s easy for everybody to be high fiving and having parties when you are winning championships every year and you’re beating everybody. It’s pretty easy to be classy and dedicated and loyal when everything is going right. You find out how tough you are when things aren’t always going right.
The one thing a lot of our former players and coaches and fans have experienced the last couple of years is new territory. It’s been a while since we really had our down cycle. It’s been painful, but to me the real Michigan Man, the real Michigan Woman, sees the big picture and understands this place. It doesn’t shake their loyalty, it doesn’t shake their passion, it doesn’t shake their dedication, it doesn’t cause them to question fellow team members and coaches and athletes. You’re all in. You believe that supporting our coaches, supporting our players is more important than taking potshots at people when they’re down. That’s my measure and I really applaud and appreciate those individuals who during these difficult times have continued to stay positive and be supportive and keep moving forward. That’s what I’m doing.
In light of the RichRod sit down with Mitch Albom, it seems clear that Brandon is leading a full on PR campaign to affect public opinion of the Michigan Athletic Department, and its major sports: football and men's basketball. Say what you will about pimp hands or Brandon just not "getting it", he obviously has a plan and he's carrying it out.
Coach Beilein conducted a Q&A today after practice. Video available at UMHoops.com.
- Lots of emphasis on fast break in practice today. Given the 25 second clock they'll face in Europe, this is especially important.
- Stu "very solid" over the past eight days. Not up and down, consistently good.
- Colton Christian re-injured his hamstring and is questionable to play during the EuroTour (but will go). Everyone else is healthy.
- Looking to get more folks attacking the basket. Manny's gone - need more to take on this responsibility.
- Will only play man during the EuroTour. Haven't had time to put in any other defenses.
- Really pleased with the team's progress along the learning curve after a week of practice, likes team's attitude.
Extensive observations on today's practice are now available at UMHoops.com.
Go there for the whole scoop, but here's the teaser:
The teams looked to be divided into two groups: In maize, those who looked to be in the regular rotation. In blue, those who aren’t there yet. The maize side consisted of: Tim Hardaway Jr., Blake McLimans, Jordan Morgan, Darius Morris, Zack Novak, Stu Douglass, Evan Smotrycz, and Matt Vogrich. The non-rotation guys: Jon Horford, Corey Person, Eso Akunne, Jordan Dumars, Josh Bartelstein.
Positive reviews: Darius Morris, Stu Douglass, Tim Hardaway, Jr., team chemistry
Then there's this:
One last side note: Laval Lucas-Perry, who was dismissed from the team in June, will transfer to Oakland. He’ll have one year of eligibility remaining after sitting out for a year.
Finally, UMHoops.com is reporting that the Big Dog's son, Glenn Robinson, III (2012 recruit) now has a Michigan offer. His current offer list is Missouri State, IUPUI, Indiana State and Valparaiso, but it's early. If he does end up at Michigan, the team will include the sons of four NBA players in Robinson, Hardaway, Jordan Dumars and Jon Horford.
When people hear your name they’re going to automatically think of your dad, but can you describe your own game? Is it different? Yeah, he was a little bit bigger, more of a forward and I’m more of a 2 or a 3. I play more on the outside but I still have his shot. I think a lot of people say that I have the same form and everything as him, the midrange game is the same, and I got his outside shot, too. We’re a little bit different because he was a forward but other than that — I can probably dribble better than he could — we’re kind of the same player a little bit.