Ask Evan Smotrycz Your Questions

Dylan Burkhardt

smotryczsigning[1]Four star Michigan commitment Evan Smotrycz has graciously agreed to answer a handful of user submitted questions. It’s kind of become a bit of a tradition here to do a user submitted Q&A with at least one signee every year. First with Zack Novak and last year with Darius Morris. It’s a little different than the standard scouting reports and feature stories and helps readers get the chance to know one of next year’s freshmen before he sets foot on campus.

You can submit questions in the comments until Wednesday afternoon and I’ll select a handful to send over to Evan.

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  • AG2

    What made you choose Michigan and what do you hope to accomplish here?

  • Evan, look forward to your career in Maize and Blue. is there a player in the NCAA that you can compare your game to? Wayward from Butler? Singler at Duke? Hummell at Purdue? They all seem to be similar size.


  • Brian W

    What do think you need to improve on most before you arrive on campus?

    Thanks for choosing Michigan, Evan.

  • Stuart

    Evan, would you say your style of play is similar to that of Gordon Hayward of Butler?

  • BlimpyBlue

    Evan, fours that really excel in Coach Beilein’s offense are players that can shoot the ball well from the perimeter and are strong ball handlers that can beat opposing fours off the dribble and get to the rim. How would you evaluate your ability in these areas and what do you plan on doing on over the next 6 months to continue improving on these facets of your game?

  • YpsiTuckyBooy

    What kind of goals do you have for yourself for the coming year? Are they just general i.e. “improve my ball-handling skills” or are they more specific i.e. “crack the starting line-up and average 10 ppg”?

  • Ben

    How much do recruits speak to each other during the recruiting process? And, how much influence do the other players in the class effect a recruits decision?

  • MaizeNBlueJ

    Hey Evan,

    Glad to have you in Maize & Blue. Obviously with the losses of Peedi Sims, Manny Harris, and Zach Gibson, there are going to be minutes available in the lineup. I assume you’ve watched the Wolverines a few times throughout the year and know what we have coming back.

    What one aspect of your game do you think will allow you to come in and get minutes right away? Is it your ability to both put the ball on the floor as a 4 (where I would think your best chance for minutes are this year)? Is it your ability to stretch the defense with your shooting? Or is there something else that you feel will allow you to get minutes?

    Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions and good luck in the coming months as you prepare yourself for college basketball and life in Ann Arbor!

  • Tom

    This is just a copy of Ben’s question, but I want to second it because I am really curious. I was a Div-II recruit and I didn’t talk to anyone about recruiting; nor did some of the better players I played with/against (Budinger, De’Angelo Chol) talk about recruiting, but I wanted to know your thoughts on this Smot:
    How much do recruits speak to each other during the recruiting process? And, how much influence do the other players in the class effect a recruits decision?

  • Giddings

    1) Did you catch the Detroit News/Free Press(?) article in which the writer mistakenly referred to you as “Evan Matrix”? Do you have any preferred nicknames or can we keep calling you “Matrix”?

    2) Who is the best player you’ve ever played against (or with)?

  • Duffy

    How do you pronounce your last name ?

  • Eddie

    Evan, frontcourt size and depth will be a focus for Michigan next year. In what ways do you maximize your size offensively and defensively, on the glass and with your shot?

  • Hi Evan, thanks for choosing Michigan! My question relates to how high school kids today view Michigan’s tradition when it comes to basketball. Obviously, you’re an out of state kid, but do you and your age group understand the tradition of Michigan basketball in the 80’s and 90’s including Glen Rice, the fab five, etc? Or is that time period completely lost because of the age difference, ncaa violations, etc?

  • lansingrage

    Will you work on handling the ball, and translating your game into a hybrid point guard look ? . J/K but seriously hayword has handles i would love to have a player like that. (two star recruit) wow !!!

  • Brick

    @giddings – Snyder called him Evan Metrics in the Freep.

    I would ask Evan if he is working to develop his post moves or if he is just concentrating on developing his face up game.

  • AC1997

    In the long term you’re expected to be a prototypical power forward in Coach Beilein’s offense. Have there been any discussions about you playing center next year given the inexperience and size of Michigan’s roster?

  • Evan, I’m looking forward to seeing you play and following your Michigan career. Do you think: 1. you’ll be able to play with the consistant intensity we saw in the Duke vs. Butler championship game. 2. What are your acedemic goals.

  • Jsham

    Evan thank you for picking Michigan to continue your basketball career. Who would you compare your style to in the NBA and who is your favorite Michigan player of all time?

  • dj

    Two possible questions:

    1) Who is the best player you’ve played against? (I always like recruits perspective on this.)

    2) What kind of player would you rather to defend? A guy bigger but slower than you, or a guy who is smaller but quicker? (This might give some insight into what he thinks his role will be.)

    Good luck at Michigan!

  • Bluebufoon

    Are you comfortable taking a smaller opponent down on the block and posting him-up ?

    If you’re going to play the Power forward position your rebounding and defense will be key– are you tough enough to play PF in the big ten ?

    Do you know Erik Katenda, who’s from your your neck of the woods, and are you encouraging Katenda to come to U-M ?

  • Greetings, Evan, and welcome to the university. When are you moving to Ann Arbor, and how will you begin informal off-season practices with the rest of the team?

  • Word missing: “how SOON will you begin. . . ?”

  • rlc

    What are your two favorite post moves?

    From how deep are you comfortable shooting jumpers?

    Coming from the Northeast, are you comfortable with the idea that in the Midwest you’ll have to refer to carbonated beverages as “pop?”

    How many syllables are there in “saline?”

    What are your feelings on the outcome of the Peloponnesian War? Do you find anthropomorphized chestnuts creepy, pathetic or both?

  • YpsiTuckyBoy

    I see you have many leather-bound books and a desk made of rich mahogany. Do you come from family of great wealth? Or are you a self-made man like Ron Burgundy?

  • ZRL

    Did it surprise you how quickly you rose in the recruiting rankings over the summer, or was that something that you expected to happen once more people got the opportunity to see your game?

  • MattM

    At what age were you first able to dunk?

    At what age did you first dunk on someone in an organized game?

    When did you first realize you could play at a Division I level?

  • Mike

    Evan, there has been a lot of talk about team chemistry lately and I am curious what your thoughts are on this? What has been your experience with the existing Michigan players and your incoming classmates. I think team unity is going to be key to the success of next years team.

  • JB

    how much have you played with or watched Jon, Tim, and even trey? What are your thoughts about them and your overall class? And, most importantly, which of the following UM alumni has the most in common with your game? Alice Brady – taking care of the team Theodore kyzinski(sp?) – firing up deep bombs?

  • Giddings

    Oops, good call Brick.

    Change all instances of “Matrix” in my question to “Metrics”.

  • The Yooper

    Two questions
    1. How well do you think your body will be able to take the beating a big man gets in the Big Ten?
    2. On a scale of 1-10, how frustrated will the announcers be with pronouncing your last name?

  • Matt

    What are your views on existentialism?

  • gpsimms

    Along Giddings’ question’s line: will you be annoyed if everyone on the internet calls you metrics for the next four years?

  • het wats up evan my question for you is do you think michigan is gona be back in the ncaa tournament or do you think yall have a chance?????? with the incoming freshmen and redshirt freshmen??????? and please beat da hell outa state next year fa me lol

  • Sub

    Evan, how are you feeling lately? About anything. How’s your family? What do you like to do in your free time? I wish you the best at Michigan and look forward to getting to know you and watch you grow in many ways at Michigan.

  • Toby

    Hey Evan, Welcome to UM! What are you most excited about, looking forward to your first year at Mich.?

  • Mark

    With the physical play of the big ten, what have you done Strength and Conditioning wise to ready yourself?

  • Bill

    Hey Evan, can you tell us why you decided that coach Beilein is the coach you want to play for. And what you think he can do for you to help you achieve you goals.

  • Bill

    Hey Evan, could you ask coach if Dylan can get some interviews with him and the guys on the team?

  • DanK

    Where can I find that hat. srsly.

  • Sam

    My question(s):

    1. So naturally, some of us in the Maize Rage will be making a sign the first time ESPN comes to town next season and for the next four years to come, as your initials fit perfectly for it. Do you have any suggestions for how we could finish the Evan Smotrycz (P) (N). All I can come up with right now is Evan Smotrycz Pwns Noobs, but I think this is used too often.

    2. As a player, do you pay any attention to recruiting rankings and/or do you ever read blogs such as this one to see how fans may feel about you? Do you think reading blogs would ever have an influence on recruits’ decisions?

  • Troy

    Hey Evan how do you think competing against top high school competition in New England has prepared you for the rugged Big Ten.

  • Paul F.

    Hi Evan, I’m Looking forward to seeing you play at Crisler. I’ve been following you on Twitter and notice you seen to like video games, Whats your favorite?

    Thanks and good luck to you at U of M.

  • j savy33

    Evan personally how much do you expect to contribute in your freshman season??

  • JBlair52

    1. What were the reasons you picked Michigan?

    2. What schools, other than Michigan, were giving you major interest?

  • Jimmy

    Sam: How about

    Evan Smotrycz Pities Nobody


    Evan Smotrycz Plays Nicely

    Evan, do you have a nickname that your teammates, coaches, or parents use? Otherwise, I can really see “Metrics” sticking for you. Don’t know if that’s a good thing yet.

  • Nick

    Last year, Michigan ran much of its offense with Deshawn as the lone high post player and four wings. Next year, many have you playing the 4 spot with another big playing the 5. Do you forsee yourself in more of a ballhandling and shooting role on the perimeter or doing of what Sims did last year with dribble hand-offs, screening, popping, rolling and sealing for post-ups? I'm sure its tough to know offensive details this early, but if Coach B has shed any light on your potential role, we'd love to know about it.

  • Justin


    How would compare your game with Gordon Hayward of Butler? From what I've gathered, you bring a very similar set of skills to the court.

    Thank you for committing to Michigan – you won't regret it. Go Blue!

  • Justin


    How would compare your game with Gordon Hayward of Butler? From what I've gathered, you bring a very similar set of skills to the court.

    Thank you for committing to Michigan – you won't regret it. Go Blue!

  • toblav

    Evan — I am looking forward to see you play and following your career. What are your acedemic plans? Do you like and up tempo game?

  • UMBasketballLover

    I've read you like to play more of a perimeter post. Would you relate yourself to Peedi's game or more of a European style of play? And one more thing. With Manny and Peedi gone do you believe that Michigan basketball can still succeed?