Michigan Draft Decisions......hold me tightly.

Submitted by MichiganMan14 on March 31st, 2014 at 1:16 AM



Here are some qoutes just updated after the Kentucky Game.  Interesting qoutes from all 3!



We have 3 B1G decisions on our hands at the moment about a week sooner then we all would have liked.  Stauskas, McGary and Robinson all have large and looming decisions to make.  Regardless of what they decide the past two years have been an absolute treat and they have represented the University well both on and off the court. 

Stauskas-  He is ranging anywhere from 11-18 in the 1st round.

     Nik has a polished overall offensive game and a deceptive ability to get to his spots on the floor.  He is an exceptional shooter and does not shy away from the big moment.  He is not an uber-elite athlete or defender.   If he stays he might vault into the top 10 and round out his athleticism and defense with another year with Sanderson.  I'm not sure that he has much left to prove on this level and it would be a fairly self-less decision to come back.  He has the talent to play in the league now and the tools to be a solid starter in the future.   Verdict: Likely Gone.


McGary-  Mitch is a 6ft10 263lb beast with quickness and great hands. He possesses the ability to score from out to 17 feet and plays with a V12 motor.  The problem is that his back injury cost him a chance to showcase more of what we saw last season and is the type of injury that a cutthroat NBA will not excuse.  Mitch has an opportunity to really inflate his draft stock by returning and performing next season.  He could go 2nd round this season or maybe even late 1st if he had an amazing recovery off his injury and showed scouts he was back to normal.  Those are a couple of "ifs' that I can't see any logical comfort in.  McGary would be the Premiere Big in the B1G next season and would likely garnish gobs of attention.  He would need to perform under this microscope but I have no doubt that he would. 

Mitch is a transcending player that is loved by the University of Michigan and all of it's fans.  We lost today because he could not go...lets just be real.  He watched us get "beat up" down low and could do nothing to help.  I just don't see it in the stars that his last experience at Michigan is helplessly watching a Final Four berth be just missed knowing he could have made all the difference.  It feels proper for Stauskas to make the jump but I can't say the same for McGary.  #Unfinishedbusiness.   That is the fan in me and all of us talking lol.  I think that next season Beilein could allow Mitch to play the 4 and grow with the position.  I think both the University and Mitch win.  There are too many ?s about him jumping into the cutthroat business of the NBA to logically make that choice.  We don't know what he is being told but everything I've seen has him as a composite pick in the mid second round.  Thats a monster risk.  The undertone of him returning last year for "one more" year is undercut by his injury.  Verdict:  Returning.


GRIII-  Oh man.  Has there ever been a more puzzling "Star" then GRIII @ Michigan?  He has great basketball skills and flashes of brilliance.  Athletically he is the real deal.  His jumper is smooth and he has range.  Defensively he is solid and electrifying as a Finisher.  The questions have seemingly always been his drive and motivation which seems to fluctuate.  Sometimes GRIII doesn't seem interested to be honest.  He doesn't show consistent ability to get HIS OWN SHOT which leaves a lot of his production in the hustle, transition and wide open jumper categories.  His basketball skill would suggest that he could pretty much do what he wants on the court and he does AT TIMES.  I find it truly fascinating.  Has there ever been a kid that made you jump out of your seat and holler out of awe inspired joy like Glenn?  On the flip side there have been many bad on court basketball decisions and sort of lack luster halves turned in by Glenn.  I think Glenn deserves a PASS on all of this because he was truly playing out of positon all year and this genuinely displeased him.  Today for example, we asked him to give up 3 inches and 60 pounds to Julius Randle on the block.  Glenn is a 3 forced to play the 4 due to McGary's injury and Donnal's redshirt along with Smotrycz's transfer.  This hasn't been fair to Glenn particularly when he returned under the assumption that he was going to be able to blossom as a 3 under Beilein.  Life isn't fair and Glenn ended up contributing to a B1G Championship team in admireable fashion despite these circumstances. 

I feel like Glenn will be doing himself a disservice by foregoing his junior year because he has only scratched the surface and is nearly a Lottery Lock next year as a 3 man under Beilein.  In that last sentence lies the key.  Can Beilein honestly promise him the 3 next year?  It depends on if Mitch stays and forcing Zak Irvin and Kam Chatman to come off of the bench....which is pretty wild.  GRIII with one more year is a danger to the B1G and will likely render him a top 5-10 pick with year one NBA potential.  He is simply not there right now despite showing flashes of the ability.  Glenn and Mitch are very close and one's decision will likely sway the other's.   Glenn is a Composite pick in the 40's currently. There is room to move up but why forego a strong potential lottery spot next year for 2nd round money?  I have genuine concerns that GRIII will be lost in the shuffle of NBA "athletes" if he jumps this season.  I would love to be proven wrong ala THJ but I don't think Glenn has Timmy's fire yet.

Verdict:  Reluctantly Stays




2015 Roster Outlook!  Cheer up and Damn all things Royal Blue.

Ideally Reasonable Roster

Walton (so) -  Spike (jr)                     

Levert (jr)-  Irvin (so)

GRIII (jr)-  Chatman(fr)/ Wilson (fr)

McGary (jr)-  Donnal (fr)/ Beifeldt (jr)

Horford (Sr)- Doyle (fr)  


or....with 3 departing sophomores...the following...                       ..


.        Walton (so)- Spike (jr)

         Levert (jr)-  Transfer????

        Irvin (so)-   Chatman (fr) / Wilson (fr)

         Donnal (fr)-  Beifeldt (jr)

        Horford (sr)-  Doyle (fr)

P.S. I'm still confident that Beilein would make this a 20 win Sweet 16 team.

This team will need a transfer though.  Massive hole at the 2 guard spot.

Missing on Blackmon and Booker becomes increasingly painful in this scenario. 

If we are going to continue this trend of 2 and Throughs....we will not be able to miss on the recruiting trail at select postions without a step back in perfomance....just the nature of the beast.  Obviously the Austin Hatch situation was unforeseen and altered things.  Brunson and Coleman are becoming must haves for the 2015 class. 



Final Thoughts:  I think the return of McGary and Robinson would vault Michigan into Top 5 status next season and make us the favorite to win a lot more than just the B1G.  The team atmosphere that Beilein has created is truly infectious and evidenced by the prevailing interest maintained by guys like Trey Burke and THJ even as they embark on their NBA careers  I don't think any of these decisions is a no-brainer like a Parker of Wiggins but Stauskas is solidly in the first round before the Draft Combine.  Nik is not a top 5 lock due to the Draft Combine generally favoring upside and athleticism which favors some of the other prospects at the wing position.  I do think that given the right system, Nik could be a really good Pro relatively soon.  He probably will and should go.  GRIII and Mitch seem like a package deal to me and this could go 1 of 2 ways.  I don't see one staying without the other.  My brain says both will stay because I think they need the development and in Mitch's case the recovery time.  My heart has this hopeless feeling that they might both set sail for the NBA......that may just be the morbid snake-biten fan in me.  Either way all 3 of these kids put a smile on my face for 2 years and couldn't be happier to have cheered my heart of for them!





March 31st, 2014 at 1:34 AM ^

Particularly when none of them are lottery locks with a questionable hunger in GRIII and a bad back on McGary.  They could all go and it wouldn't shock the world.....i just don't think it would be the right basketball decision.  Leaving early is for the players who are absolutely ready or in dire financial need.  None of our 3 seem to fit that category and the latter 2 run a serious risk by entering this year. 


March 31st, 2014 at 2:42 AM ^

I think we all have said to some degree at some point he seems like he is not going 100% at all times but I think PART of that are expectations of 5 stars and PART of that is the guys with wicked athleticism make it look easy out there and you expect more. 

I have been on and off again on GR3 during the past 2 years but the past 10-12 games, starting with that Purdue winner he has excelled except for some small periods of time like all college kids.  I would also point out the article earlier today posted here (by same OP I think) about how he got screwed with the 4 again, after the master plan was to push him to 3 this year with a 2 big man lineup - at least for 20-25 minutes a game.  His athleticism at 3 would be a far better asset ESPECIALLY defensively where he'd be playing a lot more guys his size.  Instead he is playing Maymon and Randal types.

My expectation is Mitch's decision will weigh heavily on GR3 as they are best friends AND in a basketball context if Mitch goes, GR3 is again forced to play the 4 all next season.  He was being diplomatic and taking it for the team in his comments but if you read between the lines (in the earlier article) the 3 is where he wanted to be, and him coming back with the prospect of playing out of position for a 3rd year is not something that sounds like his goal nor is it really fair to him in terms of his draft prospects.  I get "the team, the team, the team" but guess what - he has been doing the team, the team, the team for the better part of 2 years by playing the 4.


March 31st, 2014 at 8:18 AM ^

Here's why I think people "question" Robinson's hunger, and where I think he could improve:

He doesn't always hustle back on defense, and he rarely makes the hustle plays that you see from Morgan, LeVert, etc. Honestly, the only time I see Robinson hustle is a) on the fast break and b) when he drives to the lane.


March 31st, 2014 at 10:11 AM ^

He doesn't always hustle back on defense, and he rarely makes the hustle plays that you see from Morgan, LeVert, etc. Honestly, the only time I see Robinson hustle is a) on the fast break and b) when he drives to the lane.

Be honest though: You can say the same things about Stauskas.


March 31st, 2014 at 10:51 AM ^

I disagree. I see Stauskas making hustle plays, and he gets back on defense. He's not a great defender because (in my opinion) he saves a lot of his energy for the offensive end, which we kind of need him to do. But I do see him make hustle plays, and he rarely seems to be the last guy back on defense.

On the flip side . . . Caris LeVert gets the Zack Novak award for Grit. I love the way he plays defense. It sucks that he had to be the one immortalized by Harrison on Kentucky's last shot.


March 31st, 2014 at 1:49 AM ^

I don't think you can say they cost themselves a lot of money. Both of those guys had a second rounder ceilings.

I guess it depends on what kind of feedback Glenn gets as to when he would get drafted. The thing with the NBA is that you get drafted based on potential. Off or on Glenn has the same potential. Teams have seen him at his best and that is what they will draft him on. He could come back and have a real strong Junior year but I don't know how much it would affect his draft stock. I think the only way he could improve his stock and his game is if he added a more consistent 3 point shot and was able to play at the 3 (SF) position. Given the lack of frontcourt depth I think that he would be forced into playing the 4 again and thus playing slightly out of position. Unless the overall sentiment is that he is a late second rounder I don't see him coming back.


March 31st, 2014 at 1:57 AM ^

Did it though? There's no reason to believe Morris or Harris staying for another year would have convinced NBA talent evaluators to somehow overlook their faults. By the time both of those guys left, they were largely established commodities, there weren't a ton of question marks with either. I think both were relatively smart to leave while there was a good shot at NBA money on the table, even if only 2nd round money.

Glenn and Mitch are much different, I do think they both could answer a lot of questions with another season. I think Mitch should come back, Glenn is a bit trickier, as another year is one more year removed from the "raw potential" label and one year closer to "finished product". Seeing as his suposid upside is his #1 draw from an NBA standpoint, it might make sense for him to go now while teams still like him from a projectability stand point.

I think we can survive Glenn leaving, but Mitch going would leave a ton of question marks going forward. Rolling with Walton, Caris, Irvin, Chatman, and Spike getting all of the 1/2/3 minutes I think can and would work out pretty solidly.


March 31st, 2014 at 9:57 AM ^

His premier goal? Of course he is. How he does--no one knows. My guess is that like several other overly-maligned Michigan players, starting with Hardaway, he will exceed expectations. As is repeatedly noted, the draft is about potential. Robinson's got it in spades. 

It's not sufficiently appreciated how much this kid has buckled down to the game plan despite what he could have been doing on other teams. This year, especially over the last six-seven games, he raised his game in all facets while still playing totally within the scheme. He never once forced the issue, tried to take over a game, any of that. . . though he'd have had ample opportunity at a place like Purdue. We've been conditioned to think of teams in terms of single stars, and to be disappointed in kids that don't score a million points, including by several of our own recent teams. But that isn't what the Beilein offense is all about. This kid deferred and deferred and deferred. And that too will be understood--and valued--by the scouts. 


March 31st, 2014 at 1:29 AM ^

IMO, we just need one back. We're not going to struggle if they all leave but getting MM back would be huge for us down low. I expect that we'll have a good player or two emerge out of Donnal, Wilson, Doyle, and Chatman.


March 31st, 2014 at 1:46 AM ^

This could be the "Dream Roster" season that we have been waiting for.  We would have depth and talent at all positions.  This would also allow us to bring Chatman and the young bucks along slowly instead of depending on them and then perpetuating the cycle of losing kids after 2 years when they perform. 


March 31st, 2014 at 1:48 AM ^

Stauskas is gone and you can't blame him, GRIII would ideally follow the Hardaway route (he reminded me SO MUCH of sophomore Hardaway this year), but I'm getting junior year Hardaway vibes from him, Mitch I honestly have no idea.  Because he's old for his class, that's going to push him towards the NBA so his third contract is while he's still in his prime instead of when he's almost 30.

I dumped the Dope

March 31st, 2014 at 1:59 AM ^

I kept watching Stauskus' parents on TV, they seem like completely average normal people (this is a good thing), something about them says they want him to stay in college and finish like most all other parents of college aged kids.

Time will obviously tell.  I know my opinion is in the minority. Thats just a vibe I get from far far away..

Edit: just googled average NBA career of 4.8 years.  Shooting skills could carry him further.  However its good to have a fallback plan in the 5th year if things don't go quite as well as planned.


March 31st, 2014 at 2:00 AM ^


when everyone opines how our stars aren't ready for the NBA, yet how sweet they (and Michigan) would be if they came back.  Not self-serving at all.  Last year, Timmy was headed to the D League..

Our players all have very good resources to use in deciding whether now is the time to declare for the NBA, including Coach Beilein.  Doubtful they need help here.


March 31st, 2014 at 2:11 AM ^

Beilein and his staff will provide ample feedback and guide their respective decisions in the right direction.  I don't think any of the 3 are going to flame out in the league....Im just not sure that any of the 3 are so good that we need to view it as a foregone conclusion that they are leaving.  Losing 3 underclassmen in one season is pretty disruptive to any program and would be really difficult to bounce back from.  If it's in all 3 of the players' best interest to leave then they will be followed by me in the NBA and rooted for throughout their respective careers!


March 31st, 2014 at 2:14 AM ^

Yes because they are going to confuse MGoBlog with the NBA advisory committee?

I don't think anyone here is under the illusion that what we say in this thread will sway any players. It's a fun exercise in fantasy and a way to vent after a long season and a heartbreaking loss. I think the OP and anyone who contributed to this thread would be willing to admit their interests are self-serving, we are fans after all.


March 31st, 2014 at 2:36 AM ^

I just want to point out that our entire starting group from 12 months ago in the NC game either are going to be early entrees and/or potential early entrees.  A team with 3 freshmen, a sophomore, and a junior at the time.  That's some stupendous development.

I know we are recruiting solidly but to lose your entire national championship game starting lineup EARLY within 12 months would be (a) a signal of how far this program has come and (b) quite a molehill to get through.

If only Nik leaves this is another Final 4 favorite in the making, if not the #1 team in the nation next preseason.  My gut says otherwise on who is leaving and staying but I'm trying to fight off said gut.


March 31st, 2014 at 2:48 AM ^

My head just exploded upon the realization that we might put our entire starting five from last year in the NBA.  That is absolutely nuts.  This makes me wonder how Devin Booker and Luke Kennard can say no to us.  Beilein is really knocking this Michigan gig out of the park.  He has a tremendous set of assistants in Jeff....Bacari and Lavell also!


March 31st, 2014 at 3:03 AM ^

Well we are competing with blue blood programs for a guy like Kennard so the draw of a Duke or Kentucky or Kansas is still hard to overcome.  But any kid who is a wing or a guard should be looking at UM closely for personal development.  UK basically was playing NBA isolation sets and we were playing an actual offense today. 

As bad as today's result was playing UK was a blessing in disguise because recruits who are currently 13-14 years old watching today's game see 2 evenly matched teams and programs and ours is not exactly a group of seniors and juniors.  When you see Michigan did so and so on paper in standings it is one thing.  When you see Michigan going head to head with UK and it being a coin flip game with our team full of sophomores and freshmen... it's a much more clear signal that we are not second to anyone at this stage.

Hopefully some future recruits connect the dots.


March 31st, 2014 at 9:10 AM ^

I am not speaking about average Joe Schmoe 13-14 year old.  I am talking about elite prospect who Duke, Kansas, and Kentucky are already following and contacting.  These things are starting earlier and earlier as our coach among others have mentioned.  13-14 year old is now an 8th or 9th grader and if he is elite there is a very good chance Coach C has already reached out to him.  

Now in 2 years said elite prospect has seen Michigan play Louisville in the finals and UK-UM play an epic clash with UK being the "NBA lite" program.  Frankly the way we are going here of late we are essentially "2 and done" so it's just 1 more year of college.  UK has only so many slots they can fill so the more games like this the more we become something viable as a battle partner on the recruiting line.  I remember a lot of transaction buckets and dunks for us too.  I kept saying in the 2nd half if I was an impartial observer this would be such a fun game to watch.

If you just want to dunk all day and are 6'10" UM is probably never going to be your college of choice.  Randle was the only kid out there who had a post game and he had that coming into college (saw him tear up MSU in game #1 of the year).


March 31st, 2014 at 2:57 AM ^

Before this thread gets too long let me say the "its better to stay in college to develop" is utter baloney. 

In the pros they get professional coaching on par or better than college for 98% of college players.  They can practice as much as they want every day notwithstanding trips and games.  Their coaches can coach them all season.  The season is longer.  The nutrition is pro level.  Their strength and conditioning training is pro level.  They don't have to worry about class.  They have money to hire any personal trainers, gurus, etc.

I could go on if I really think about it but that's off the top of my head.  The only reason to stay in college for a basketball sense (not talking social scene, lifelong friends, the "college experience") is if your maturity level is low and the NBA would overwhelm you.  All 3 of these young men seem to have excellent heads on their shoulders so I don't see the "lifestyle" being an issue for them.

Does any person leaving risk being cut in 2 years?  Yes but so does a college senior who just graduated.  No one knows how much better or worse Manny Harris or Morris would be if they stayed another year (I think both should have stayed another year but I am speculating) - it's conjecture on your/our part.   Those 2 made more money in a few years than most of us will in 20,30 years and can go back and get their degree with money out of their own pocket if that is what they wish. 

But the "you should stay because you'll develop better in college" meme is way overblown for those mentally ready and with a skill set that keeps them on a team rather than drifting on 10 day contracts.


March 31st, 2014 at 3:23 AM ^

I just don't buy the safety of jumping into the NBA prior to being ready.  The definition of ready is getting more and more vague these days.  I think the value of the collegiate experience is underrated but in our kids situations....they've played 10 NCAA Tournament games in the past 2 years so I'd say they've been exposed to the bright lights. The NBA is cutthroat and they will NOT coddle kids especially ones that don't look to be superstar organization changers.  The D league is filled with players that at one point in time thought they were ready too.  It's a tough decision and really tough to evaluate.  I think the best way is literally the eye test.  Can you imagine a kid making plays in the NBA.  Trey Burke was a no-brainer.  Even THJ you could see that he could make an impact.  I don't know that Nik can duplicate THJ's rookie year and he won't have to ...to be fair.  I can't confidently say that GRIII will be a consistent contributor next year in the NBA.  Mitch is no where near basketball shape right now and still rehabbing a major back injury.  It will be interesting to see what decisions are made in the next few weeks.  Im sure they will come down soon as Spring Semesters need to be shored up.


March 31st, 2014 at 3:34 AM ^

"I just don't buy the safety of jumping into the NBA prior to being ready."

What is not safe about a guaranteed contact worth millions if you left school early? If anything it would be close to stupid to turn it down if your priority is "safety".


March 31st, 2014 at 5:40 AM ^

If McGary and GR III were to go in the second round instead of the first, there would be some risk there. Second round picks also tend to get less of chance to prove themselves, in terms of early playing time, compared to first round picks. They would also get less than 1M per year if they went late in the first (26-30) or in the second. Both of them have the potential to be lottery picks next year, provided they continue to improve.

Honestly, I think it will depend on the individual workouts and the projections they receive. I think there is a decent chance they both come back if they get late first (26-30) or second round projections. Though, I could see them both still leaving anyways. I agree with the consensus that Stauskas is gone. I think it would be in his best interest to go, since the only two significant holes in his game are elite athleticism and defense. I don't think he can improve either one of those in a significant enough manner to change his draft stock next year.

Of course, it is interesting to think about how scary good next year's team would be with all of them. The chances of that happening are obviously slim to none, though.


March 31st, 2014 at 8:22 AM ^

The only reason to stay in college for a basketball sense (not talking social scene, lifelong friends, the "college experience") is if your maturity level is low and the NBA would overwhelm you.

I don't agree that the NBA is automatically the best place to develop even with the advantages you mentioned.  You assume that the NBA has as much of a vested interest in one individual player's development as a college team does.  If you don't develop on their schedule, which is a pretty accelerated one, you don't play and you don't get signed, and they'll just draft someone else next year.


March 31st, 2014 at 9:18 AM ^

I agree with your points that the NBA is a business whereas college is more of a nest.  That said my point was for players who are good enough to not drift around on 10 day contracts and stay with a team for a full year.  I don't see either Mitch or GR3 as players a team won't keep for a year as second rounders if they were to fall that far.  Doesn't mean they play that much (or at all) athough I thought THJ was less of NBA material than either Mitch or GR3 and he is doing very well.  And yes the NBA doesn't coddle you but you have to be self motivated to improve at any level, and part of my rationale was these kids are to the point they have a good head on your shoulder.

If you are lazy/unmotivated in the NBA and not an elite lottery type prospect, unless you are 7'0 you generally can play yourself right out of the league very quickly- that goes to the having a pretty good head on your shoulders.



March 31st, 2014 at 1:07 PM ^

Agree with a lot of what you're saying as long as you are a first round draft pick.  I did some looking last week and there were 23 college players drafted in the second round of the 2013 NBA draft.  9 aren't in the NBA or D-league - didn't even make the team.  Most of the other 14 have bounced between the NBA and the D-league. 


March 31st, 2014 at 9:22 AM ^

I don't know much about Loyer and as I said 98% of college coaches.  We happen to be in the few that have a pro level type coach.  Maybe 15 programs out of 300+ can say that.  But the Pistons are a complete dysfunction.

Drummond seemed to improve pretty darn well in 1.75 years under Loyer and Cheeks and whatever rental coach the Pistons threw out last year.  Would he have done the same under Ollie at UConn who seems to be an excellent college coach?  Would find it difficult to believe he would be behind his current pace of improvement at the NBA level by staying in college.