Form Tracker: January 16th, 2014

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Michigan 80, Penn State 67 - #27
Scott
Mapes

Our weekly feature tracking the performance of Michigan players performance over two game segments of the season. Form Tracker is now interactive. Readers can vote on each player’s rating by hitting ‘Too low,’ ‘Too high’ or ‘Agree.’

Nik Stauskas8.5 (Last week: 9)

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What more can we say about Nik Stauskas? He’s been Michigan’s most consistent, durable and explosive offensive weapon of the season, and you could make a strong case for him being the best offensive player in the Big Ten conference. He passes, he shoots and he rebounds. Stauskas averaged 16.5 points, 4.5 assists and 4.5 rebounds over Michigan’s two wins against Nebraska and Penn State. The sophomore was especially impressive against the Nittany Lions, pouring in 21 points and making up for what was at times a sub-par defensive effort.

Glenn Robinson III8.5 (Last week: 5.5)

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Against Nebraska, Glenn Robinson III scored 19 points on nine two-point field goal attempts — and he didn’t shoot one free throw. He was 8-of-9 from the field in one of those scary-efficient Robinson games that few others could put together. John Beilein talks about the coaches taking a three-pronged approach to Robinson’s improvement this season: 1) the coaches getting him into open space 2) his teammates finding him when he’s open and 3) improving his individual play. All three appear to be clicking right now, as Robinson is looking as good as he ever has on the offensive end despite a not-so-efficient outing against Penn State.

Derrick Walton7.5 (Last week: 6)

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Derrick Walton is hitting his stride. The freshman is improving at a surprisingly steady rate since the start of Big Ten play. In four conference games, Walton is averaging 11 points and three assists per game. While the assist numbers could be better, Michigan doesn’t need much more from the freshman when its sophomore perimeter players — Stauskas, Robinson, Caris LeVert — are playing well. Walton also came through in some big spots, hitting what turned out to be the game-winning layup in the final minute of Michigan’s win over Nebraska and sinking some clutch shots down the stretch against Penn State on Tuesday.

Caris LeVert: 7 (Last week: 4)

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Caris LeVert is rounding back into non-conference form. While his scoring numbers don’t jump out — 10 points and six points in Michigan’s past two games, respectively — his passing has taken steps forward. LeVert has recorded five assists in each of his past two games — a number he only accomplished twice in the previous 14 games. LeVert and Stauskas make for an imposing passing duo, with both able to operate effectively in the pick-and-roll and off dribble penetration. If LeVert continues to find open teammates, he could turn into Michigan’s primary assist man.

Jon Horford6.5 (Last week: 7.5)

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Jon Horford was great against Penn State. In 17 minutes, the big man was 4-for-5 from the field for 11 points and pulled down seven rebounds. Horford showed once again his ability to shoot short jumpers and he went up strong to the basket on numerous occasions after receiving the ball on pick-and-rolls. The redshirt junior continues to provide exactly what Michigan needs from him.

Jordan Morgan6.5 (Last week: 6.5)

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It’s only fitting that the players who make up two halves of Michigan’s low-post attack are placed one after the other. Jordan Morgan and Horford seem to have an agreement: when one player isn’t feeling it, the other steps up. When Horford didn’t play well at Nebraska, Morgan came through with one of the best games of his career: 15 points on 7-of-9 with four rebounds (two offensive). Morgan and Horford both played well against Penn State, though Horford hogged the rebounds with Morgan only grabbing two.

Spike Albrecht3.5 (Last week: 5)

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Michigan’s backup point guard hasn’t been utilized much over Michigan’s past two games. Albrecht has scored three points in each contest while playing 12 and 18 minutes, respectively.

Zak irvin2 (Last week: 7)

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Zak Irvin hasn’t done much since going off against Minnesota, playing only 36 minutes combined over Michigan’s past three games. His jumpshot has cooled off, he’s made 1 of his last 7 triples, and his playing time has been decreased.

  • Walton was mistakenly listed at an 8.5 in the original posting. Post has been updated, sorry.

  • Champswest

    FYI
    My criteria when voting is, if my score for a player is within .5 of the assigned score then I vote as agree. Only if my opinion varies by 1.0 or more do I vote “Too High or Too Low.”

    • Seems fair. There seems to be more agreement this week than in recent weeks :-)

  • mikey_mac

    I had to vote down Horford, because he’s been exhibiting McGary’s terrible habit of trying to block shots that he just has no business jumping at.