By Dylan Burkhardt | Recruits | Posted on September 25, 2014 at 10:45 am
Michigan will host class of 2015 five-star guard PJ Dozier for an official visit this weekend in Ann Arbor. Dozier is ranked 25th nationally by 247Sports Composite and is Michigan’s top target in the class of 2015.
Michigan has had two in-home visits with Dozier, a first visit by Michigan point guard coach LaVall Jordan and a second visit with John Beilein and his assistants. Dozier will also visit North Carolina on October 3rd, Georgetown on October 17th and South Carolina on October 24th.
Dozier appeared to have just four official visits scheduled (Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgetown) after Louisville accepted a commitment from Antonio Blakeney. However, Blakeney announced his decommitment from Louisville which caused the Cardinals to jump back into Dozier’s recruitment. Louisville had in-home visit with Dozier on Wednesday evening and will receive an official visit from Dozier.
Dozier’s father made it clear that his wants to take all of his visits before making a decision.
“He said, ‘Dad, until I go on my visits, that’s the only way I’ll know if it’s a fit for me,'” Dozier Sr. told the Courier Journal. “People can predict all day, but there would be a lot of people winning the lottery if they knew what they were talking about, right?”
By Dylan Burkhardt | Recruits | Posted on September 24, 2014 at 10:28 pm
Michigan extended a scholarship to 6-foot-8 forward Tyler Cook on Wednesday evening.
Cook is the No. 58 player in the class of 2016 according to 247Sports Composite rankings and holds offers from Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Florida, Florida State among others. News of the offer was first reported by Ben Weixlmann.
Cook averaged 5 points and three rebounds per game while playing up a grade with the St. Louis Eagles on Nike’s EYBL Circuit this summer. He averaged 9.7 points and 6.7 rebounds per game during his sophomore season at Chaminade.
Cook is described as a traditional power forward and had a breakout summer highlighted by an impressive 32 point, 11 rebounds performance at Kansas’ summer camp.
Michigan is picked to finish behind Wisconsin, Ohio State and Michigan State in the conference. Junior guard Caris LeVert was selected as an Preseason All-Big Ten player and a second team All-American.
Michigan is faced with mixed preseason expectations this year after entering the last two seasons with a top-ten ranking. This year the Wolverines are widely regarded as a fringe top-25 team and expected to finish somewhere in the upper-half of the Big Ten. The Sporting News and Athlon Sports both picked Michigan fifth in the conference while Lindy’s Sports picked Michigan to finish sixth.
By Dylan Burkhardt | Big Ten | Posted on September 24, 2014 at 10:30 am
Welcome to Big Ten’s Best, a look at some of the Big Ten’s specialists returning for the 2014-15 season. Today we break down the best post-up players in the conference. (Previously: Best Pick-and-Roll Players, Best Post-Up Scorers) These lists are based on last year’s numbers, but involve some prognostication as well.
Michigan fans are familiar with how important having a great finisher can be. The Wolverines lost two of the best cut and finish players in the Big Ten last season in Glenn Robinson III and Jordan Morgan, but the conference returns plenty of players that finish consistently above the rim and have a knack for finding open space and easy baskets.
1. Branden Dawson (Michigan State)
Percent of Offense: 23.2% Points Per Cut: 1.41
Cuts to the basket and drop-off passes made up just shy of a quarter of Branden Dawson’s offense in 2013-14 and his combination of strength and athleticism makes him a lethally efficient finisher. Entering his senior year, Dawson faces many of the questions that Michigan combo forward Glenn Robinson III faced last season. Dawson is 0-of-9 from three-point range in his career and hasn’t shown consistent ability to create offense outside of cuts to the rim and transition dunks. While he won’t be Michigan State’s primary creator (that role is saved for Denzel Valentine), Dawson will have to show a more well-rounded offensive game in 2014-15.
Expect Kameron Chatman to play the majority of, if not all, of his time at the four position. For all intents and purposes, the three and the four are the same position in Michigan’s offense – they are just on opposite sides of the floor. John Beilein started referring to the three and four positions as the right and left side forwards and Chatman is an ideal fit as a right side forward to replace Glenn Robinson III.
Michigan’s rotation in Italy started with Irvin and Chatman at the three and four respectively and when Aubrey Dawkins would check in to replace either player – the starter still on the floor would move to the four. This allows Chatman and Dawkins to only learn one position while Irvin (who played backup minutes at the four last season) can play both.
The Big Ten announced time and television information for the remainder of the conference games that will be broadcast by CBS or ESPN’s family of networks.
Two of Michigan’s 18 conference games will be broadcast by CBS with nine additional games picked up by an ESPN station. CBS will broadcast Michigan’s road games at Michigan State (Feb. 1) and Indiana (Feb. 8) while the February 22nd home game against Ohio State is a potential wild card game.