Report: German forward Moritz Wagner to visit Michigan this weekend

Dylan Burkhardt
on

As first reported by Scout.com, German forward Moritz Wagner is expected to take an official visit to Michigan this weekend.

Beilein has made a trip to Germany earlier this winter to recruit the 6-foot-10 forward and now he’ll make a return trip.

Vedran Modric, a European basketball reporter, tweeted that Moritz was favoring playing in college and Michigan was considered a front runner. UNLV, Providence, Auburn, Virginia and Arizona are other schools that have been linked to his recruitment.

Wagner doesn’t currently hold a scholarship offer as he hasn’t made a visit to Ann Arbor, but this weekend’s visit is likely to change that. Wagner would be a class of 2015 recruit and would be immediately eligible to play next season.

John Beilein was asked on Friday afternoon about the possibility of adding a class of 2015 recruit and left the door open by responding, “you never know.”

He has played very limited minutes with the Alba Berlin senior team – playing in just five games total this season – but he’s played a significant role in Alba Berlin’s youth setup.

In the NBBL (German youth league), Wagner is averaging 17 points, 5 rebounds, two assists and two steals per game while shooting 61% on twos and 30% on threes. He also averaged 9.6 points and 5.4 rebounds during the Adidas Next Generation U18 Tournament, helping Alba Berlin to a third-place finish.

Scout.com quoted a NBA scout that has seen Wagner play:

“He’s a versatile kid who knows how to play ball,” a NBA scout that has evaluated him multiple times told Scout. “He’s not an athlete, but with his length and coordination he manages to deceive his opponents and get to the rack quiet easily. Once he becomes a more consistent shooter he will be a nightmare on the wing.”

“He reads the game well, gets his teammates involved and is unselfish player,” the NBA scout added. “The most impressive thing about him is his passion for the game and the will to win. He legitimately cares for the game.”

  • David Remmler

    Wagner would be an incredibly huge get for this program. He fills a huge need in the frontcourt as well as singlehandedly saving the 2015 recruiting class. I honestly think that we’re extremely unlikely to land Jaylen Brown but we’re the frontrunner for Wagner. With Duncan Robinson also becoming eligible in 2015 and all the current players more experienced, next year promises to be much better. Even without Wagner, I’d be optimistic about making the tourney next year. Add in Wagner and who knows?

    As a bonus, it would give us momentum to add one or two (depending on attrition or early entry) of our top targets in 2016. A PG (Thornton or Winston?) would have to be at the top of our list.

    • Would be a nice get and Robinson and Wagner would really add size to the wings for Michigan. Not sure how all of the front court pieces fit together yet (especially if you add MW into the mix) so that will be interesting.

      The bigger question will be whether Caris leaves and if he does I think you need to add some quickness to the guard spot defensively.

      • David Remmler

        Yes, I’m not sure about all the pieces either. One drawback with Wagner is that he isn’t described as athletic and we would ideally benefit from an athletic big who can rebound and block/alter shots. But they don’t grow on trees and we don’t seem to be in front for any athletic bigs. Nevertheless, I think the Wagner has the size we need and a healthy Wilson as well as a more experienced Doyle and Donnal will add up to a decent frontcourt.

        I would hope that any of our top 2016 PG prospects would have the necessary defensive quickness.

        • psickert1

          We have a couple of nice defenders who can block shots on deck for the next couple of classes we will have a red-hot freshman as in Dj Wilson who can block shots and we have Jon Trajectory going in the following year. I would love to add size and skill to this roster. WAGNER will fit perfect. These schools aren’t recruiting him because he lacks talent, trust me.

          If you look at it we can technically consider D J WILSON and Duncan Robinson as 2015 recruits and damn good ones. I am pretty sure that both would’ve been top 75. They are talented players.

          We get caught up in rankings too much… good players are good players. Some take a year or so to develope and some catch on immediately.

          I am excited about Wagner…. he Helps diverse this roster in a big way. We are looking very good for years to come if everyone stays on board and if he commits Chapman can go to.a small forward / shooting guard spot where he is more comfortable.

          • 93Grad

            People need to slow their role on Robinson. He is a D3 transfer. Not sure how that equates to a top 75 recruit. The truth is we won’t know anything about Robinson and Wilson until they play next year. Some people thought Chatman was a five star and look how that turned out.

          • Mattski

            Guess it’s good to have some nay-sayers around! I see Moritz as kind of unique in his skill set, too–he’s quite deceptively fluid, and if he’s a real student of the game then we’re on our way. (His height is certainly nothing to sneeze at.) I think that we tend to forget that the magic of Beilein’s teams for us has been how good they would become at moving the ball under Beilein’s direction. Unless you got somebody better to plug in?

          • psickert1

            Okay I can see that you are intent on being a negative Nancy. That’s all good. Obvious I am intent to be satisfied that our coaching staff knows what they are doing and not to take a message board poster rants seriously.

            So what if Duncan played D 3 ball as long as he can play. Don’t forget people like you ranted when Jordan Morgan was signed They ranted when Zack Novak was signed. They blew smaller when Stu Do uh glass was signed. People was even upset that we sign Tim Hardware Jr early because they wanted to hold out for Trey Zeigler. How many people ranting about the current players on our roster that are performing.

            One poster said that he hoped that Dawkins commits elsewhere .

            They didn’t want Spike. They wanted that Italian kid that didn’t work out at OSU. The fact that you are judging a prospect without seeing them play is crazy. I have seen every player in person besides Wagner and personally you can’t really judge his overall try talent by watching a video but you can see a unique and diverse skillset..

            Some people will complain regardless. I trust that our staff knows what they are doing. GOOD NIGHT.

          • Chris De Sana

            Just wondering…………..is the rim a different height in D3? Is the basket a different size in D3? If the kid can shoot and is really 6ft8 he will add to the team no question because right now we simply do not have someone that can hit the open jumper that is often created in PNR offense. Do I think Donnal could get there yes but this kid comes in as a supposed known commodity that is already breaking Nik’s shooting records in practice.

    • 93Grad

      I don’t agree at all. I don’t see the need for another unathlwtic big man with Chatman Donnal and Robinson already on the roster. Seems very redundant to me.

      • Who would you compare him to on the roster? Seems very different than Chatman (passer), Donnal (pick and pop?), Robinson (shooter). Wagner more of a traditional face up four, not so much a shooter but some interesting skills.

        • MAZS

          Perhaps he doesn’t exactly mirror anyone we have, but I still question that he fills a pressing need. Frankly, we lack ballhandlers (and to a lesser extent shooters) at the 2 & 3–particularly if Levert leaves. Brown would be a perfect fit irrespective of his skill level–though I appreciate he is a very long shot.

        • 93Grad

          I agree he’s not exactly like what we have, but I don’t see how he fits a need either unless they already believe that Chatman and/or Donnal aren’t coming back. This team sorely needs ball handlers, athletes and shot creators and I don’t see him fitting any of those needs.

          • David Remmler

            I totally disagree. Even if Levert leaves, next year we will have quite a few ball handlers/shot creators – Walton, Spike, Irvin, MAAR, Dawkins and Robinson. Chatman has even shown some flashes in this respect. But we’ve been literally destroyed inside almost every game. In the NW game, Olah obliterated us inside and we had no answer. Olah had 25 pts and 12 rbs while Donnal/Doyle combined had 3 pts and 6 rbs! That’s why we lost. NW isn’t even close in that game if we just make it respectable inside.

            I don’t know good Wagner will be but we could use a skilled big man even if he isn’t a McGary or a Webber.

          • MAZS

            Yes Spike and Walton can shoot and dribble–but both are 6’0″ and therefore limited to playing together. Rahk is still very right-handed and his passing is a work in progress. Yet Rahk is literally our only (college) 2 guard. I like both Irvin and Dawkins, but neither has a good handle or vision (Irvin’s is improving and Dawkins is starting to try to put the ball on the floor). And we don’t know on Robinson who appears to be a catch-and-shoot player. As of now, we would have 1-1 1/2 strong handles on the court next year if Caris doesn’t return.

            If the coaches believe Wagner is a genuine upgrade over Chatman, Wilson and Donnal (excluding Doyle and Teske), then yes offer. But if not, then I believe we have bigger needs.

      • psickert1

        I Also hate the fact that you are giving up on Chatman. Big time school recruited him for a reason. He is skilled and a good player, he just has to learn and get comfortable.. I’M not the business of judging kids until their career is finished. Look at Max B…. I just comprehend with some posters. I Bet Noone thought that Spike can contribute at this level. He is a big ten starter. Noone thought that Nik Stakus or Caris Levert would be future pros. Noone thought that Tim or Trey would be pros. Matter of fact Nik had two team mates that were higher ranked and more highly regarded and they probably won’t make the pros

  • 81wolverine

    I like the skills. Very coordinated and agile for his size. Size is something Michigan could use more of too. It looks like they don’t call hanging on the rim in Germany. He was doing some pull ups on a couple plays.

  • Colby

    Any other visitors this weekend?

  • DingoBlue

    I don’t mind adding size and becoming a bit more like Iowa on the wing. Would be nice from a defensive rebounding position. I’m for Wagner joining the team if he wants to.

    • MAZS

      Without commenting on your size argument, I hope we never become more like Iowa. I hate the way they play.

  • Corperryale

    Aye carumba, I guess we’re going to have to get used to the B Team around these parts. I will withhold further judgment but I hope we’re not dealing with a Smotrycz ceiling here. I will take a Dekker/Layman/White-level player, so if that’s what he is (can’t tell from the the Euroball footage), I’m OK with it. Also if this dude ends up playing the 5 then something is seriously broken. Under no circumstances should this guy be our five. He’s a four.

    • psickert1

      Snotty was not bad when he played at UM actually he had some big games against top tier talent. Maryland didn’t help with his development that’s all..

      • Mattski

        He was the only Michigan player in the last ten years who I didn’t like. And he tangled with Beilein. Leave it at that.

        • ChipperFliet

          I think Smotty wanted to play on the perimeter all the time. Never go inside on either offense or defense. Funny, looks like that’s where Maryland had him play this year.

    • Mattski

      Smot was a lot more limited than that, no?

  • psickert1

    I see this kid as Kyle Singler or Jonas Jabarko type player. I like what I see on video.

  • Meral Kazan

    Anybody know how to say “Come to Michigan!” in German? Also, the MaizeRage (regardless of how many there are there) should show/shower him with “love”!

  • Champswest

    We don’t want to go into next season with two vacant scholarships. At this point, you take any quality kid you can get. There aren’t a lot of options still available. We still have one spot open if we can come up with a quality guard.

  • Nick

    -Man, thats some weak competition.
    -Reminds me of Donnal’s high school highlights (I found Donnal more impressive)
    -But, a legitimate will to win goes a long ways. Think its lacking a bit on this team.
    -Wish we could get some help on defense

  • Cory

    It’s so ridiculous to me how some people were willing to celebrate the signing of Kam Chatman, but write this kid off so quickly. I’m not calling anyone out specifically (not just this site but others), but the jumping to conclusions is so ridiculous. You don’t know what you have until games are played. Who saw Stauskas coming and turn into a lottery pick? Who saw any of our freshman wings contributing the way they are now? Actually, who nationally saw Kevin Pittsnoggle? I’m going to go ahead an trust coach Beilein’s decision making and believe the program is moving forward.

    • Cory

      And in no way am I writing off Kam Chatman. I’m just saying there isn’t a single person here that can say with certainty how someone’s game is going to translate to the college ranks unless they’re a can’t miss prospect. As Michigan fans, how have we not learned this by now?

      • MAZS

        So for you, we can’t have a conversation? Its kind of the point of sports blogs. So long as posters aren’t taking unfair shots at college kids, we come here for info and to discuss the team. And I don’t believe people are writing Wagner off–people are simply making assessments based on limited data and video, and our needs. Most everybody here trusts Beilein’s instincts.

  • A2MIKE

    I honestly think some of you are missing the real point here. I think we are going to experience some unexpected attrition. I think the staff probably knows who and are bracing for that.

    • Corperryale

      Unfortunately, I think you are right. Although I would not exactly call a Donnal or Chatman transfer “unexpected.” (It’s just that people have been discouraged from speculating about such things.)

  • MGoTweeter

    like his game a lot. very smooth going to the basket and good release on his shot. obviously needs to get stronger but he has a decent frame to add bulk to. if they can add an athletic 2 or combo guard to this class, it could be a real nice class. a versatile 4, knock down shooter 3, and a shot creator/D guy 2. still long way from that happening, but that looks like the goal for this class.