#14 Michigan Men's Basketball 2013-2014 Preview

Michigan Wolverines

2013-2014 Overall Rank: #14
Conference Rank: #3 Big Ten

Michigan Team Page#14 Michigan Men's Basketball 2013-2014 PreviewBuy Michigan Basketball Tickets

Coach John Beilein is known for developing talent and getting more out of less. However, now he has an amazingly talented roster that returns three starters from a team that played in the national title game. The Wolverines 31 win 2012-2013 season came to an end at the hands of Louisville, but this was a consistent team that was in every game they played with the only exception coming against in-state rivals Michigan State. Michigan will be ready to give it another go and, if they can replace a couple superstars in the backcourt, they will be eyeing another Final Four.

2012-13 Record: 31-8, 12-6
2012-13 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: John Beilein
Coach Record: 122-85 at Michigan, 415-260 overall

Who’s Out:
On a team with so many stars, losing anybody who was in the regular rotation last year is going to be noticeable. However, without Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. Michigan could be in big trouble. Those two were the top two scorers and passers on the team. Burke averaged 18.6 points and 6.6 assists and was the leader on the floor. Hardaway added 14.5 points and 2.4 assists. Michigan could have big problems running the offensive efficiently. The Wolverines ranked seventh in the nation in field-goal percentage and first in turnovers per game with a mere 9.4 and that will not happen again without Burke running the show. Little used Eso Akunne and Matt Vogrich are the only other departures.

Who’s In:
The Wolverines will attempt to replace Burke and Hardaway in part with freshmen. Derrick Walton Jr. will be unfairly compared to Burke for quite a while, but the point guard has the tools to live up to those expectations. Walton is a great scoring point guard who will take over this team at some point. The question is whether or not he is ready to lead as a freshman. Zakarie Irvin, Indiana’s Mr. Basketball, is a big guard and the highest regarded recruit. If he is not starting, Irvin will make a big splash off of the bench for now. Andrew Dakich, Cole McConnell and Sean Lonergan will all add depth on the wings. Mark Donnal, a 6-9, 230 pound power forward, will fight for playing time as a freshman. Even if he does not contribute much this year, Donnal is a great fit for Coach Beilein’s system and will eventually emerge as an impact player.

Who to Watch:
In the meantime, the Michigan frontcourt will revolve around Glenn Robinson III, Mitch McGary and Jordan Morgan. Robinson III had a great freshman campaign, averaging 11.0 points and 5.4 rebounds and is capable of turning into the star of the team. Robinson III can attack the basket with ease and has a decent enough outside shot. McGary came on strong during Michigan’s superb NCAA Tournament run and that has propelled expectations. The 6-10 sophomore averaged 7.5 points and a team high 6.3 rebounds as a freshman. This time around he will be asked to do more scoring. Morgan lost his starting job to McGary late last season, but he could start beside McGary if Michigan wants to play a bit bigger. That is certainly a possibility with the experience this group has in the frontcourt. Jon Horford and Max Bielfeldt will team up with Donnal to provide a majority of the depth in the paint.

Final Projection:
Sharp shooter Nick Stauskas will have more on his plate as a sophomore. He averaged 11.0 points per game and knocked down an impressive 44.0 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc in 2012-2013. This year the opposition may focus on Stauskas more often and his amount of open looks will depend on the scoring around him. Caris LeVert averaged 10.8 minutes per game as a freshman and will look for minutes on the wing along with the freshmen. He will not do much scoring, but he is a big, tough wing who will play good defense. Spike Albrecht is going to be in an interesting battle with Walton for the starting point guard spot. Both should see plenty of minutes, but Albrecht’s one year of experience in the system is a big plus. And for Michigan, finding a leader who can take care of the ball is extremely important. There are plenty of scorers, defenders and rebounders…the Wolverines just need somebody who can come close to being as effective as Burke with the ball in their hands.

Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA

Projected Starting Five:
Spike Albrecht, Sophomore, Guard, 2.2 points per game
Nik Stauskas, Sophomore, Guard, 11.0 points per game
Glenn Robinson III, Sophomore, Forward, 11.0 points per game
Jordan Morgan, Senior, Forward, 4.6 points per game
Mitch McGary, Sophomore, Forward, 7.5 points per game

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 75.2 (25th in nation, 2nd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 63.3 (86, 7)
Field-Goal Percentage: 48.4 (7, 1)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.4 (155, 8)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.6 (45, 2)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 38.5 (18, 2)
Free-Throw Percentage: 70.1 (157, 6)
Rebound Margin: 2.9 (89, 8)
Assists Per Game: 14.5 (62, 4)
Turnovers Per Game: 9.4 (1, 1)

Madness 2014 NBA Draft Rankings:
#6 Glenn Robinson III
#20 Mitch McGary

Madness 2013 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#29 Zakarie Irvin
#52 Derrick Walton
#107 Mark Donnal


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