Notebook: Camp weekend standouts, Billy Donlon

Dylan Burkhardt

Michigan hosted its College Practice Camp and Team Camps this weekend in Ann Arbor, here are some notes from the weekend thus far.

Brandon Johns shines at College Practice Camp

The best player at Michigan’s College Practice Camp on Friday afternoon was four-star forward Brandon Johns. He wasn’t just the most talented player in attendance, he played like it as well. Johns has really come into his own over the last year and his combination of size and skill is impressive. He handled the ball on the perimeter, attacked the paint and finished through contact at camp on Friday.

Souleymane Koureissi (2018) was a notable out of state visitor for the camp. He’s a lengthy forward prospect who clearly has some potential, but is still a bit rough around the edges. He looks like a mid-major plus prospect right now, but he’s one that the Wolverines will continue to track.

Williamston’s Sean Cobb (2019) was in attendance along with a promising 2018 wing, Walter Ellis, who is the son of former NBA star LaPhonso Ellis. Ellis can really score the ball and had some nice moments in . Class of 2020 forward Carlos Johnson (2020, Benton Harbor) was in the building for both camp events and the 6-foot-6 sophomore built more like a senior with his impressive frame.

Young big men like Sage Walker (2019 Corunna) and Caleb Hodgson (2019, Dansville) also showed some promise while Westerville North (OH) guards Julius Brown (2019 Westerville North) and Jeremiah Keane (2019) made it in for camp.

Harlond Beverly stands out

Class of 2019 guard Harlond Beverly was one of the best players at both camps and played like one of the better prospects in the 2019 class.

He has high-major interest from Michigan, Michigan State, Iowa, Northwestern, Ohio State, Temple, VCU and Wisconsin among many others. The wolverines were in contact with Beverly since the June 15th contact date passed and it will be interesting to watch how the recruitment progresses after his big camp performances this weekend.

Beverly is a smooth guard who has the athleticism at 6-foot-2 to finish above the rim — he threw down several poster dunks throughout the weekend — and also plays with great composure.

In a recent update with NY2LA, Beverly praised Michigan’s winning program.

“We’re trying to get to know each other,” Beverly said of Michigan. “They’ve had a winning tradition since I’ve been watching. That stands out.”

Dave DeJulius, Pete Nance headline Team Camp

The headlining names at Michigan’s Team Camp were 2018 offer Pete Nance and 2018 commitment Dave DeJulius.

Nance and DeJulius went head-to-head in an afternoon game at the IM Building, a matchup that DeJulius and East English got the best of with a 20 point win. DeJulius had 12 points and 6 assists in the 59-39 win, while Nance had 5 points, 5 rebounds, 4 blocks and three assists in the head-to-head matchup.

Nance had a more impressive scoring effort in his other two games, reaching double digit points and easily a half dozen blocks in wins over L’Anse Creuse North and Belleville. John Beilein was courtside at every game that Nance played.

Some other notables in attendance included Marcus Bingham Jr. (GRCC, 2018), Harlond Beverly (SCS, 2019), Drew Peterson (Libertyville, 2018) and a host of others. We’ll have full evaluations from both camps in this week’s recruiting roundup. Find some additional tidbits from Saturday’s action on our subscriber forum.

No Billy Donlon

Billy Donlon wasn’t at either of Michigan’s camps and all signs point toward him being on the Northwestern bench next season, including this report by the News Sentinel.

Michigan could find itself having lost two assistant coaches in a week after being caught in the domino effect of Chris Holtman being hired at Ohio State and then LaVall Jordan to Butler. Donlon’s connections to Northwestern are strong — his high school coach is on staff, his dad lives in Chicago and used to coach there, and he’s a long time friend with Chris Collins — but the move would leave the Wolverines in a very difficult spot considering how many recruiting visits are on the schedule and the July live evaluation period is around the corner.

  • bobohle

    You don’t really know what’s behind lateral moves especially this late in the game. Whether it be philosophy differences or personality conflicts or stuborness for change by the head man or whatever or maybe the reasons listed are fact. This is not good for Michigan unless JB has replacements already in mind.

    • The “reasons listed” about Billy’s dad, Billy’s connections, everything else are all 100% fact. If NW had a job last year, he absolutely would have been on the NW bench last year. Did he go into this offseason planning to go to NW? No, that’s not it. Imagine you like your job but there are two or three things that maybe frustrate you a bit about it and then you get offered a job with your best friends and family … what are you going to do?

      • bobohle

        Yes frustrated was the word I was looking for.I was talking about lateral moves in general though and not Billy Donlan or Jeff Meyer specifically. I just don’t have the knack sometimes of putting it down on paper like you journalists do.

    • Leslie Hoerwinkle

      Donlon wouldn’t be leaving because of personality conflicts or philosophical issues. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s gone within a year or two for a head coaching job. Why he was fired by Wright State is a mystery.

  • MrLG

    There must have been some tension between him and Beilein. This is very different from Jeff Meyer. While there may be perfectly good family and friendship connections to NW, this is not helping Donlon land a head coaching job. Meyer, OTOH, had probably given up on the HC job. After leading a much improved Michigan defense, Donlon abruptly leaves the team at a key moment for a lateral (at best) move. Bad for him, bad for UM.

    • Don’t really see what difference it has w/r/t a head coaching job… The connections to NW are very strong for Billy and as I said below…

      Pretend that you have a good job that you are comfortable in but one or two things bother you a bit (say, you think you deserve a little more money or maybe should have more responsibility in one area or another) now say that you get offered a job closer to your family, working for some of your best friends and mentors… What are you going do?

      • MrLG

        Job hopping never looks good on your resume. Assuming that Donlon is applying for an HC job one year from now, what would be better: (a) 2 years at Michigan with a strong endorsement form JB or (b) 1 year at UM, 1 year NW, lukewarm endorsement from JB and a strong endorsement from Donlon’s buddy Chris Collins. I see (a) as the better resume. BTW, coaches don’t have family lives, with the possible exception of Jeff Meyer :-)

  • MAZS

    I believe Sean Cobb is Brandon Johns half-brother, if it hasn’t already been noted elsewhere.