MBB Wish List for Next Year

Submitted by AC1997 on March 19th, 2016 at 12:13 PM

Thought I would start a chain about what our wish list would be for the basketball team next year.  This year was a bigger roller coaster than I can remember for a long time.  I know everyone is concerned about recruiting and overall upside, but here is a start:

  • Wagner needs to put on 20 pounds of muscle and start to cut out some of those bonehead freshman mistakes that limited his minutes.  
  • Start to build the offense more around Rahk.  If anyone is going to play hero ball, it needs to be him, not Irvin.  I want Irvin to be the role player and spark he's best suited for, not the over-dribbling shot-chucker he is sometimes tempted to be.  
  • I'd like Xavier Simpson to come in right away and be good enough to deserve 20 minutes per game.  Walton can't play 36mpg next year and he needs to be able to play off the ball and return to that corner shooter role that he was so good at earlier in his career.  
  • I want to see the front-court start to sort itself out.  We will have a whopping SEVEN players that are exclusively front court players.  That's too many for a team that plays about 1.5 of them at any time.  Chances are that Teske and/or Davis will redshirt.  It is getting hard to justify two roster spots for PF like Wilson/Chatman that can't get off the bench.  I guess what I'm saying is that if any of these 7 players express an interest in transferring.....maybe you don't discourage them unless it is Wagner.
    • Then you figure out if Wilson or Chatman can improve enough to justify playing 10-15mpg against big teams.  
    • I think you also spend some time trying to figure out if Donnal/Wagner have any chance of playing the PF spot against big teams.  I doubt it, but worth considering.  
  • Robinson has a chance to be a real star if he broadens his game more.  He shot 45% despite slumping late in the year.  How does he generate more offense?  How do they get him open?  

Walton & Irvin are great role players, but not alpha dogs.  They hit their ceiling and actually regressed badly in the case of Irvin's shooting.  Someone needs to step up as the leader and personality of this team.  I see three candidates - Rahk, Robinson, or Wagner.  



March 19th, 2016 at 12:21 PM ^

I think Wagner really has some momentum going into next year. He definitely makes some mistakes, maybe forces some things sometimes, but if he can gain some weight while cutting down on some mistakes I think he's gonna be one hell of a player for the next few years. I already want him playing more than Donnal. 

Wolverine Devotee

March 19th, 2016 at 12:23 PM ^

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March 19th, 2016 at 12:27 PM ^

People need to GTFO Irvin. He's playing at 60-70% at best. The guy is a shell of himself right now. You watch him next year. It will be a different guy.


March 19th, 2016 at 12:58 PM ^

so, he's not as his best, but he is comfortable chucking up 20 shots? If he's not 100%, JB should limit his minutes, and Irvin should limit his shots.

Too many good shooters on the floor to go 1/9 from 3. Pass the damn ball!


March 20th, 2016 at 9:43 AM ^

Don't understand this.  He shot 12 shots and scored 20 points in the play-in game.  Don't look that the 1/9 as if it is normal.  You know it is not.

Irvin has had a nce second half to B10 season and the tourney games.  He'll be a senior next year.  He's going to be pretty good.


March 19th, 2016 at 12:27 PM ^

  1. MAAR develops into a better distributor.
  2. Wagner and Chatman turn into viable starters.
  3. Xavier Simpson at least provides a scoring punch off the bench, hopefully starts.
  4. Doyle or Teske can play enough D to allow Wagner to slide to the 4 if the team needs to go big.


March 19th, 2016 at 12:33 PM ^

Depth and Health. I think Walton is hurt (back). This team really needs to be relatively more healthily. Depth will help that but the depth is needed obviously to not have the Dakichs out there.


March 19th, 2016 at 12:35 PM ^

I just got done reading an article about Gary Payton Jr, the Pac 12 player of the year. You'd think that with his bloodlines, he'd be great from the get go. Not so much. He was 6th man as a Jr. in high school, played center as a senior, then went to prep school for a year. After that, he went to community college for 2 years. He was a reliable starter in his jr year (4th year out of high school) and finally blossomed this year.

If you need another example, look at Frank Kaminsky's career stats at Wisconsin. They are obviously exceptions or at the extreme edge of the development curve, but they are also examples of what can happen during a player's college career. So while many people here bitch and moan about this season, and claim that Beilein is on the hot seat, I am eagerly awaiting next year when we return everybody who contributed to an NCAA tournament team.

We thought that Aubrey and Doyle would improve this year. They didn't, but MAAR and Donnal did. Wagner's potential is obvious. I hope the bigs can step up and Irvin can be moved to the 2 where he belongs. Split 80 minutes among Walton, Irvin and MAAR and we're fine at the guard spots before you take into account the incoming frosh.

Robinson and Aubrey can handle the 3 leaving you with Wagner and Chatman at the 4 and Doyle and Donnal at the 5. What's nice about this is that every position has multiple options for someone to make that jump to the next level.


March 19th, 2016 at 2:00 PM ^

He had about 3 decent games. His best moves are drop the pass, get beat on pick/roll, turnover, miss a 1ft layup, and forget to box out. Look, I know that sounds extremely unfair, but the last few minutes he played against ND was IMHO, the summary of his Junior year. Every time I saw him standing in no-mans land on a back door cut or standing still instead of fighting for an offensive rebound, I realized the if Mr. Calves hadn't left for IU, he'd be starting.....which in itself is a bit scary as well.

I just don't see it with him and considering our numbers at the 5 with the young guys coming in, i'm more confident that a combination of MoWeasley (starting), with a Doyle (post narcolepsy issues) and DJ (assuming healthy) is more promising than Donnal at this point.

I think we should be pretty solid with Walton running the offense and MAAR/Simpson being able to generate off the dribble. Our issues with Robinson and Irvine not being able to catch/shoot was our overall lack of ability to drive the lane and run a reliable pick and roll. Without the threat of driving the lane, or hitting the big off the pick, the other teams were able to just blanket our wings.

IMO we should be a similar team next year and the different between us as a bubble team again and a solid 6-10 seed ( 4-6 in B1G) will be staying healthy, ability to attack the rim and significant big man improvement....asuming that comes from Mo.


March 19th, 2016 at 12:38 PM ^

1. Play ok interior defense
2. Box Out
3. Stop the standing around
4. Stop the chuckfest
5. Take the Rahk to the rack.

If they can do those things, which really isn't asking a whole lot, things will be much better.

Phone formatting, I know. sorry.

carlos spicywiener

March 19th, 2016 at 12:54 PM ^

irvin, dawkins, doyle, chatman, donnal, wagner

If four of these guys take the next step this offseason (irvin was handicapped by his back), I'll be thrilled. MAAR and Walton are both studs, but we need these guys to make a leap.

I'm also anxious to see if X Simpson and Ibi Watson can give us immediate minutes.


March 19th, 2016 at 12:54 PM ^

Read my lips, MO WAGNER AT THE 4. Wagner and Donnal gives us a massive upgrade on defense and rebounding. Hard to watch 3 guys hoping every three point shot goes in and one rebounder against 2-3 defenders.


March 19th, 2016 at 2:51 PM ^

He's not that guy...he's a Steve Novak type shooter. Needs good guards to hit him spotting up. If he could dribble drive w/ consistency while also maintaining that shooting stroke he wouldn't have been playing D-3 a couple years ago.

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Perkis-Size Me

March 19th, 2016 at 12:57 PM ^

I'm not a basketball expert, but here's what I have noticed that they need:

-Swagger. They had that in spades when Burke, McGary and Stauskas roamed the floor. To put it more simply, they had an identity, they had confidence. This team just does not seem to have an identity or any true leader like what Burke and Stauskas were.

-We've had quite a few recruiting misses in the last few years. Simpson and Teske need to buck that trend. Not saying they need to be stars next year. They'll be freshmen and they'll make freshmen mistakes, but I'm hoping to see them start off well and continue to improve as the year goes on.

-Health. This isn't anyone's fault, but losing LeVert and Albrecht to injury really hurt this team's chances of having a better season. You lost two playmakers and two seniors who were expected to lead the team. This team needs to stay healthy, plain and simple.

-Improvement from big men. Ever since McGary, Morgan and Horford left, our big men situation has been pretty awful. Teams are usually able to get whatever they want on us when they go inside. This is where I'm hoping Wagner continues to improve next year, and Teske makes some meaningful contributions.

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March 19th, 2016 at 12:59 PM ^

Consistency from Donnal. He has shown he can be good, just has to keep it together. I'd like to see him shoot more 3s.
Wagner at the 4.
Doyle turning into a Jordan Morganlike player.
Healthy Irvin.
3 players who can dribble and drive and finish.
Chatman as a defensive specialist


March 19th, 2016 at 1:06 PM ^

Well, one other thing you need before next season is someone to transfer...as Michigan is still one over the scholarship limit for next year.

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March 19th, 2016 at 1:07 PM ^

Michigan fans not openly berating a player after a bad game or play. A sophomore big man is a sophomore, not a senior. I expect major improvements in the frontcourt next year with Wagner and Donnal.