The basketball program apparently wanted in on Commitmas, too. Michigan picked up their first hoops commit for 2018 yesterday when three-star Detroit East English Village Prep point guard David DeJulius chose the Wolverines mere days after getting the offer, which came on the heels of DeJulius pouring in 46 points in front of John Beilein.
While a Michigan offer didn't materialize until this week, Beilein had his eye on DeJulius for a long time, per TMI's Brice Marich:
“They have always been recruiting me, but just offered me a week ago,” DeJulius told The Michigan Insider. “I always grew up wanting to go to Michigan and I wanted to commit then when they offered, but I wanted to think and make sure it wasn’t just from my emotions. I wanted to think it through and make sure I was making the right decision. There is no better decision than this because it is such a great environment, great education and great program.
DeJulius said Beilein has watched him play "like 20 times" dating back to his freshman year, and assistant coach Saddi Washington was recruiting him back when Washington was at Oakland.
DeJulius is the first commit in the 2018 class. There's room for two more as the scholarship count currently stands; it's near-inevitable that one or two more spots will open up. He's the third point guard Michigan has taken in three classes, following freshman Xavier Simpson and 2017 commit Eli Brooks.
|4*, 83, #22 PG||
3*, 89, #22 PG,
3*, #32 PG,
Rankings for the 2018 class are all over the place as the various services catch up on scouting prospects. ESPN is the highest on DeJulius but has nothing in the way of a scouting report; Scout gave him a cursory two stars; Rivals and 247 split the difference.
DeJulius is listed between 6'0" (Scout, 247) and 6'2" (ESPN) and 188-190 pounds. While he's probably a point guard, at least primarily, he could slide over to the two in Beilein's system as well.
[Hit THE JUMP for scouting, video, and more.]
Caleb Swanigan [Gold and Black dot com]
Part One (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, MSU, Minnesota) found here.
Teams are listed in alphabetical order.
There weren’t high expectations for the Cornhuskers entering the season, and they look as if they’re one of the worst teams in the Big Ten. They opened the season with four straight wins – including a victory over a solid Dayton squad at a neutral site – before losing six of their next seven. Most of those losses came to quality teams, but a home loss to Gardner Webb on Sunday was an unfortunate sign – and they barely beat Southern two days later. Nebraska made the NCAA Tournament in year two of the Tim Miles era, but they look destined for their third straight losing season since then and it’s easy to wonder whether he’ll be able to right the ship in Lincoln.
The offense is the problem for Nebraska this year, especially the shooting: NU is outside the top 300 nationally in eFG% and are just hitting 28.6%(!) of their three-point attempts on the season, the third-worst mark of any major conference team. Outside of Tai Webster, few Huskers can get to the free throw line for easy points, so the Nebraska offense is frequently mired in scoring slumps. Webster has been a pleasant surprise in his senior year; the Kiwi guard has upped both his usage and efficiency and is distributing the ball as well as he has in his entire career. Ed Morrow, a sophomore power forward who also plays some center, has been Nebraska’s second-best player and is a force on the offensive glass.
Anyways, it would be a surprise if Nebraska wasn’t near (or at) the bottom of the conference standings come March.
[Northwestern, OSU, PSU, Purdue, Rutgers, and Wisconsin after the JUMP]
The tradition continues. See previous for Why.
: I am trying to surprise my husband with a bowl trip this year but I don’t know how to communicate where we’re going. I thought we were going to the Orange Bowl, but then I looked it up and it said some sort of credit card company.
Words are used to convey meanings that the listener is already conditioned to understand. The words enter the ear canal and are interpreted by the brain into cognitive thoughts.
For example here’s how you refer to all of this year’s bowl games in English:
(bold are the ones where they’ve done away with the real names. All times are EST. Click each logo to get the full size. Use however you like.)
* semi-final games.
Relative glory [Adam Glanzman]
- Brian’s wife likes wrestling and American cheese.
- Grayson Allen and the arrogance of Mike Krzyzewski. Craig Ross shares the Jamal Crawford/Carlos Boozer story (the difference was Michigan reported it)
- Discussion on how schools handle discipline (pre-Perry news). Video makes the difference with Joe Mixon, shouldn’t.
- Stoops has a good track record; some coaches don’t, so should coaches get watched on this?
- Players leaving before bowl games: It bugs Brian, Ed is disappointed. The players have the leverage: how will they use it?
THE USUAL LINKS
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) December 23, 2016
Derrick Walton's game-sealing three came after Michigan had missed their previous 12 attempts from beyond the arc. Michigan's narrow win over Furman was a 60-possession slog that was hard to watch outside of the two highlights above.
Moe Wagner (18 points on 16 FGA, five offensive boards) and Zak Irvin (16 points on 14 FGA, seven assists) were just effective enough on offense for this game to remain tight throughout even though the Wolverines couldn't buy a long-range jumper. It'd be easy to pin a game this ugly on the dead winter-break atmosphere and players looking ahead to the holidays; this was more Michigan missing a bunch of open looks in a painfully slow-paced game.
The Wolverines now get a significant break before their Big Ten season tips off at Iowa on January 1st. After tonight's game, we could all use some time off from basketball.
Commitmas continues unabated as four-star IMG Academy linebacker Jordan Anthony announced his commitment to Michigan this evening via video. The Wolverines beat out fellow finalists Auburn, Maryland, Oklahoma, and Penn State.
Anthony is the 25th commit in the 2017 class and the fifth to make his pledge in the last eight days, following Tarik Black, Donovan Peoples-Jones, Cesar Ruiz, and Deron Irving-Bey—all of them are composite four-star recruits or, in the case of Peoples-Jones, even better. If you happen to agree with Rivals, Anthony is also a five-star talent.
4*, #13 OLB,
5*, #1 ILB,
4*, 83, #9 ATH,
4*, 92, #12 OLB,
4*, #6 OLB,
There's a significant outlier here: Rivals, which already had Anthony at 70th overall, moved him into five-star range in their latest update. ESPN, which likes Anthony as both a running back and linebacker, also has him a little higher than the other two. He's was primarily a running back as a freshman and junior; he was primarily a linebacker as a sophomore and senior. ESPN is the only site that spends much time discussing his potential on offense:
Quite honestly it would be easy to immediately slot this guy into a linebacker role for the next level which he likely is, but the more you watch him on offense the more belief you have that he may be able to remain on offense in the right scheme as a load carrier.
They expect him to wind up at linebacker and Michigan's needs indicate he'll play defense, too. I don't believe the position-switching explains the split in his rankings; IMG is too well-scouted for sites to fire-and-forget on their highly touted guys.
Every site save 247 (6'0", 220) lists Anthony at 6'1" and 220-226 pounds. Depending on how Don Brown utilizes the SAM spot post-Peppers, Anthony could wind up at either the WILL or SAM; he's got the athleticism and coverage ability you want in an outside linebacker.
[Hit THE JUMP for scouting, video, and more.]
Michigan's picked up their first 2018 commit, in-state PG David DeJulius. This is an old-school Beilein commit: early and somewhat unheralded, though he is a four-star on ESPN. Most other places have him a three star around #150. This courtship was a quick one, as he was just offered three days ago after Beilein saw him blow the doors off:
Following Saturday’s 98-49 win over Maryland-Eastern Shore, Michigan coach John Beilein would’ve been hard-pressed to witness a better offensive performance.
But hours later, Beilein watched Detroit East English Village junior point guard David DeJulius put on a show with 46 points on 13-for-17 shooting, including 9-for-11 on 3-pointers, in a 79-63 win over Macomb Dakota at Southfield A&T High’s “Battle of the Best” holiday tournament.
That got him his offer and he wasn't long in accepting it.
Ace will have a fuller post tomorrow, when the impending announcement of FL LB Jordan Anthony doesn't overlap.
Sophomore WR Grant Perry today was informed of the charges that would be filed against him, which include two counts of sexual assault and running from police. He has been suspended apparently until the law is finished with him.
Statement from UM regarding Perry's arraignment: pic.twitter.com/tG2k1c2bBr
— Rachel Lenzi (@RLenziCMG) December 22, 2016
The charges against him include assaulting, battering, resisting or obstructing an officer(a felony), plus two counts of fourth degree sexual assault and a minor-in-possession charge (all misdemeanors). The Lansing State Journal had some details on the incident:
He is accused of touching a female who was waiting in line outside a downtown East Lansing bar at 12:20 a.m. Oct. 15.
"When (police) arrived on scene, we tried to grab onto him, and we had to chase him," said Lt. Scott Wriggelsworth, a spokesman for the East Lansing Police Department. "In the midst of that fracas, one of our officers suffered a minor hand injury."
Perry, along with Jack and Jared Wangler, was suspended for the Illinois game the week after the incident, and Perry didn’t travel to MSU. He was active for the Maryland, Iowa, Indiana, and Ohio State games this year, notably catching 4 passes for 49 yards in The Game. How much of the incident Michigan knew at the time of disciplinary action is an open question.
Perry, playing a Dileo-style slot, was Michigan’s third most productive receiver this year, and was expected to play a larger role in 2017 with the graduation of Chesson and Darboh. Perry is almost certain to miss the Orange Bowl, and his future with the team will likely be decided by the justice system.
#27 Michigan (9-3) vs
#162 Furman (7-5)
Ann Arbor, Michigan
|WHEN||7 pm ET, Thursday|
|LINE||Michigan -15 (KenPom)|
PBP: Jeff Levering
Analyst: Stephen Bardo
Right: Even by plush-mascot-costume standards, that is not a very intimidiating knight. At the very least, someone should get this guy a shield.
There's not too much to update from Michigan's end after consecutive blowouts of teams ranked in the 300s on KenPom. John Beilein clarified after the Maryland Eastern Shore game that Duncan Robinson started over Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman due to a clerical error, one I assume he'd have pushed harder to correct against a viable opponent. (MAAR checked in within 90 seconds.)
This is Michigan's final non-conference game before a lengthier-than-usual holiday break; after tonight, the Wolverines don't play again until traveling to Iowa on New Year's Day. While Michigan is still a 15-point favorite, Furman is a significant step up in competition from the last two games.
THE LINEUP CARD
Projected starters are in bold. Hover over headers for stat explanations. The "Should I Be Mad If He Hits A Three" methodology: we're mad if a guy who's not good at shooting somehow hits one. Yes, you're still allowed to be unhappy if a proven shooter is left open. It's a free country.
|G||1||John Davis III||Jr.||5'11, 165||71||16||99||No|
|Shooting 40% from three. Despite size, not a point guard: 27 assists to 18 turnovers.|
|G||12||Devin Sibley||Jr.||6'2, 175||83||26||102||Not At All|
|Efficient scorer with high volume, 49% on twos, 48% on threes.|
|G||35||Daniel Fowler||Jr.||6'4, 195||80||22||122||No|
|Excellent passer—58 assists, 17 turnovers—and effective inside-outside scorer.|
|F||3||Geoff Beans||Jr.||6'7, 210||54||17||105||No|
|Just A Shooter™ is 28/65 on threes, 8/15 on twos. Also: named Geoff Beans.|
|F||21||Kris Acox||Sr.||6'6, 215||68||23||104||Very|
|Shoots 53% from field on all two-point attempts, solid rebounder, not a rim protector.|
|F||32||Matt Rafferty||So.||6'8, 215||42||19||87||Yes|
|Good shot-blocker and rebounder, offense plagued by turnovers this year.|
|G||5||Andrew Brown||So.||6'4, 190||40||15||103||No|
|The rare turnover-prone Just A Shooter™. 17/35 on threes, 12 turnovers.|
|G||23||Jordan Lyons||Fr.||5'11, 170||36||15||107||No|
|Another Just A Shooter™. 11/31 on threes.|
[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the preview.]
Bowl tickets available. From the Alumni Association:
We have a limited number of tickets available in the Michigan Alumni Section. These are lower level tickets in section 110. We are selling them for face value at $245. You do not have to be a member to purchase these tickets, all you need to do is call our Alumni Relations team at 800.847.4764 during normal business hours. Like I said, we have a limited number of tickets available, first-come, first-serve.
If you're still looking.
Florida State also has tickets, but there's a catch: you have to start at safety. Tomahawk Nation reports that starting safety Ermon Lane will miss the bowl game with a foot injury. Derwin James, who missed much of the season, is also confirmed out. This is bad, and the situation in the FSU secondary makes it worse:
FSU will be incredibly inexperienced in the back end of the defense, and it is not known exactly what combination of players FSU will use to sure up the back end against the Wolverines, who feature tight end Jake Butt and a strong running game. Trey Marshall and A.J. Westbrook will receive a lot of playing time, with true freshman Carlos Becker likely to play more snaps unless Lane can somehow play.
Lane was even in PFF's grading; the two guys mentioned at his replacements were moderately negative (-5.1 and –2, respectively). Becker's only gotten 40 snaps this year. The worst bit for FSU is that Lane's absence might force third corner Marcus Lewis to play more. Lewis has the worst coverage grade in the FSU secondary on under half of their snaps.
Preview preview. Speaking of PFF's grading, FSU breaks down into four tiers:
- Three incredible players: RB Dalvin Cook, DE DeMarcus Walker, and DT Derrick Nnadi all carry massive PFF grades and have the stats and NFL hype to back those up.
- A good to very good receiving corps, depending on how much you want to ding their run blocking.
- Several units that are average. Francois is up and down as a passer and got most of his points running; the linebackers are the definition of average; FSU has a couple of good players and a couple of not so good players in the secondary. Aside from the two NFL first round types, the rest of the DL is just okay.
- Rutgers's offensive line. Grades for guys with 350+ snaps this year: +11.2, –14, –5.6, –20.4, –8.4, –4.3, –11.5, –9.2. Your lone acceptable OL is LT Roderick Johnson. Everyone else is a disaster. This is why whenever you turned on an FSU game this year Francois was neck-deep in defenders.
Michigan's most difficult task will be containing Walker, who has 15 sacks this year. If they can do that they should get enough offense to win since the opposition is going to have serious trouble blocking Michigan's DL.
PFF's freshman All-America team is not great for last year's LB scouting. There are a couple of familiar names here:
Linebacker: David Reese, Florida; Shaquille Quarterman, Miami (FL); Caleb Kelly, Oklahoma
Injuries opened the door for Reese to start down the stretch after impressing in a backup role early on. He played well in coverage while missing only six of his 50 tackle attempts. Quarterman paired with Michael Pinckney to form the best true freshman linebacker duo and he led all Power-5 freshmen with 44 stops. Kelly came on strong down the stretch, keeping the ball in front of him in coverage while finishing with a solid 70.6 grade against the run.
Reese decommitted after Michigan told him they didn't have an early enroll spot for him and Caleb Kelly seemed way more interested in Michigan than Michigan was in him. Hopefully this was a DJ Durkin problem; he was both the DC and the LBs coach a year ago. Also in (slightly) painful inclusions, albeit for a different reason: Isaac Nauta and his 27 catches for 353 yards. He probably made the right decision because he wasn't going to get that at Michigan, but he'd be nice to have on the roster.
No Michigan players made it and that seems right. Rashan Gary played well but didn't play much on Michigan's ultra-loaded DL, and Ben Bredeson was middling at best.
Michigan should still be pretty good next year. Get The Picture points out a story about the stunning youth of most of this year's playoff participants:
Alabama entered the season with the SEC’s least experienced roster. Ohio State did the same in the Big Ten. Ditto for Clemson: bottom of the ACC. But it was actually much starker than that. Phil Steele, the king of preseason mags, uses a five-part formula to determine experience, and he ranked the Tide roster 116th out of 128 FBS teams. Clemson was ranked 101st. Ohio State was dead last at 128th.
So if you’re scoring at home — and recruits are — then three of this year’s best four teams were also among its youngest, somehow surviving one of the most unpredictable regular seasons in recent memory. The holdout is Washington.
These days if you're recruiting at a very high level you can get away with inserting a bunch of untested sophomores and juniors, because the top end is much more ready to go than they were in the past. Michigan will insert almost entirely touted recruits into their starting lineup, and most of them should have one or two apprentice years to their name.
Nothing is more annoying about DCFC than this. Detroit is a name frequently proposed for MLS expansion because it makes a ton of sense. It's an excellent sports town and it's smack dab in the middle of the Toronto-Chicago-Columbus triangle. But Detroit City is vehemently opposed:
...for this team and its passionate supporters, being included would have also presented another conundrum: DCFC’s identity is homegrown and supporters say it would disintegrate under MLS’ sanitized fan control policies.
For them, the only way to keep growing soccer in Detroit, the only way they saw the sport as having a real future here, was to keep it community and supporter-focused. The Detroit sports landscape, Wright said, was too treacherous for any team to turn their back on that model.
That is absurdly self-important and aloof. Many MLS environments are excellent and homegrown because the league was able to establish a détente with existing fans. The league has done a terrific job of crossing over from Family Fun to actually fun environments in Toronto, Seattle, and Portland.
The same can happen in Detroit, because the DCFC hardcore are not 1) particularly numerous and 2) the only soccer fans in the city. If DCFC wants to finish out of the playoff slots in the NPSL because MLS would frown on them saying "fuck" 300 times in a 90 minute match, that's their prerogative. It should have no impact on MLS's decision to come to Detroit or not. There's no reason the two teams can't coexist since they serve different markets. One will draw the interest of soccer fans; the other will draw the interest of people who like to act tough and watch colored smoke instead of soccer.
Etc.: Iowa didn't shake hands with North Dakota after a basketball game, and it's a very big deal. Zach Hyman finds his spot in the NHL: next to Auston Matthews. Analyst Jimmie Dougherty gets a position coaching job under Willie Taggart. Could Arizona have a better Michigan recruiting class than MSU? Probably not! But it's close!
Speight, Peppers, and Charlton make PFF's list of best single game performances in the Big Ten. Charlton's against MSU should have been even more astounding but for "multiple holding violations that he caused but went uncalled."