Michigan Wolverines: College Hoops

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Every Thursday our writers sit down to discuss a few topics in and around Michigan sports. With Tom on vacation this week, WolverineNation editor Bob McClellan joins the conversation to look at The Opening, freshmen and other varsity sports.

1. Of the 2015 offers, which prospect do you think should be No. 1 overall in Michigan's war room?

WolverineNation Mailbag 

June, 11, 2013
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ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- We’re less than a week away from Michigan’s high school camp, which is always a fun time. I, for one, will likely forget sunscreen and be a tomato by the end of the week. And Tom, well, he’ll bring the snacks. And Mike will make fun of us for being overly prepared for the football and underprepared for everything else. It’s always a party at WolverineNation.

But with such an exciting offseason so far, there’s so much more to talk about than snacks and sunscreen, so let’s get to it. Next week Mike will take questions, so get those to him (michaelrothsteinespn@gmail.com or @mikerothstein).

Jimmy, Maynard Street, Ann Arbor: Do you think Jabrill Peppers (Paramus, N.J./Paramus Catholic) will play immediately and if so, will he be an impact player?


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WolverineNation Roundtable 

June, 6, 2013
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Byrd StadiumMark Goldman/Icon SMIMichigan will make its first trip to Maryland's Byrd Stadium for the 2015 B1G opener.
Every Thursday our writers sit down and discuss a few topics surrounding Michigan athletics. However, with the summer upon us, vacations are here and Mike is relaxing this week so with this roundtable we invited in WolverineNation editor Bob McClellan.

1. The Big Ten released its 2015 conference schedule on Monday. What struck you initially about the match ups?

Bob McClellan: The opener at Maryland. It’s the first opportunity for Michigan ever to play in College Park, and the Baltimore/D.C. area is an important one in which to recruit. Current Wolverines Blake Countess (Our Lady of Good Counsel) and Henry Poggi (The Gilman School) are from the area, and Michigan offered two of Countess’ former teammates who were members of the ESPN 150 in 2013. It’s reasonable to believe playing at Maryland every other year could pay recruiting dividends.

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ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- We’re halfway through May, Michigan’s 2014 class has nine of 16 (likely) commits. I’d say the glass is half full for Wolverine fans at this point. So with that attitude, let’s go into this week’s mailbag, which has a lot of fun and interesting questions to ponder.

Next week, Mike will take care of the mailbag so send your questions in to him (@mikerothstein, michaelrothsteinespn@gmail.com). But now, on to this week’s questions…

1. Zach Myles, Long Island: If you had a chance to schedule a future football home-and-home series, who would it be against and why?

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WolverineNation roundtable 

May, 2, 2013
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Every Thursday our writers sit down to chat about Michigan sports and the issues surrounding them. Today, they look at redshirts, hypothetical 3-on-3 basketball tournaments and early offers.

1) Of the 2013 class, which player do you think would benefit the most from a redshirt?

Shane Morris
Tom VanHaaren/ESPN.comFreshman QB Shane Morris won't be afforded the luxury of a redshirt that would be of huge benefit.
Michael Rothstein: Shane Morris. While offensive linemen usually redshirt to gain size and strength, Morris would be a huge benefactor of an extra year. He won't be Michigan's starter and barely played as a senior due to mononucleosis. Having a year to understand Al Borges' system would be extremely beneficial to his college career. However, he might not have that luxury due to the injury to Russell Bellomy which leaves him as the second healthy quarterback on the roster this fall.

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WolverineNation mailbag 

May, 1, 2013
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ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Draft day, three commitments and Big Ten realignment approved. Who said the end of April is slow for football? Well, whoever said it was wrong, because this past week has been jam-packed with news and stories for Michigan fans. So, let’s talk about it.

Next week Mike will take care of the mailbag so send any questions you have to him: @mikerothstein or michaelrothsteinespn@gmail.com. Now, on to this week’s questions ...

1) Darryl G., Ypsilanti: Realistically, how excited can we be about either line next season?


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WolverineNation Mailbag 

April, 17, 2013
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Malik McDowellTom Hauck for ESPN.comESPN Watch List defensive end Malik McDowell doesn't exactly have to worry about losing a potential spot in Michigan's 2014 class.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The weather is warming up in Michigan, which means a few things: basketball is over, spring football is most definitely over, and camps and combines are right around the corner. So, since recruiting is going to dominate the airwaves for the next few months as Brady Hoke puts this next class together, I decided to dedicate most of today’s mailbag to questions about the 2014 class.

Next week Mike is taking care of this, so get your questions to him (michaelrothsteinespn@gmail.com or @MikeRothstein). Now, on to this week’s questions...

1) Micah Nuechterlein via Twitter: If Lawrence Marshall (Southfield, Mich./Southfield) were to commit, would they still take Malik McDowell (Detroit/Loyola) and Da’Shawn Hand (Woodbridge, Va./Woodbridge) in this class? A: I really don’t see that happening. But, if it did (and crazier things have happened), then yes, I do think that they would take all three. Because you just don't pass on a Da'Shawn Hand or Malik McDowell. They are all different players along the line, so as long as the numbers work the coaches wouldn't pass on any of them. That might not matter, though, because they all seem to have different timelines to make their decision. The coaches are aware of where they stand with each guy and how many spots they have left, so I wouldn't worry too much about this scenario.

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WolverineNation Roundtable 

April, 11, 2013
4/11/13
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Spike AlbrechtAndy Lyons/Getty ImagesSpike Albrecht's first half for the ages Monday is a pleasant memory that will stick with Michigan fans despite the loss to Louisville in the national title game.
Every Thursday our writers sit down to chat about three topics surrounding Michigan sports. This week, they take a look at the past national title game, the ensuing spring game and the 2014 recruiting class.

1) What will you remember most about the Michigan-Louisville game?


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WolverineNation basketball roundtable 

April, 4, 2013
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Michigan Wolverines Matthew Emmons/USA TODAY SportsWith Michigan making the Final Four for the first time in 20 years, it only seems appropriate to dedicate the whole Roundtable this week to Trey Burke and company.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Every Thursday our writers sit down to chat about Michigan sports, but with Michigan in the Final Four for the first time in two decades, they thought it appropriate to devote this entire roundtable to basketball.

1) What is the key for the Wolverines against Syracuse?


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ARLINGTON, Texas -- Michigan is headed to the Final Four for the first time in nearly 20 years following Sunday's 79-59 annihilation of Florida in the Elite Eight at Cowboys Stadium.

Freshman Nik Stauskas scored 19 of his game-high 22 points in the first half to spark the Wolverines, the No. 4 seed in the South Region. Trey Burke added 15 points and seven assists. Will Yeguete and Kenny Boynton led Florida with 13 points each.

Michigan hardly looked fatigued from Friday's 87-85 overtime win against No. 1 seed Kansas in the Sweet 16. John Beilein's squad rallied from a 14-point deficit to win that game, but it certainly didn't need any second-half heroics to get by the Gators.

The Wolverines led by as many as 24 points before taking a 47-30 lead into intermission. Stauskas made all six of his field goal attempts in the opening stanza. Five of them were from 3-point range. It'd be inaccurate to say that Michigan caught Florida on an off night or that it built its big lead mainly because its opponent played poorly.

The Gators were simply out-classed in terms of talent.

By losing, No. 3 seed Florida became the first team in NCAA tournament history to fall in the Elite Eight three consecutive seasons. Michigan, meanwhile, advances to play Syracuse in the national semifinals Saturday in Atlanta.

Turning point: Florida, which trailed by scores of 23-5 and 41-17 in the opening half, put a bit of a scare into Michigan after intermission. A jump shot by Boynton shaved the Wolverines' lead to 50-38, but Michigan was quick to respond with a layup from Mitch McGary. Seconds after McGary's basket, Spike Albrecht stole Florida's inbounds pass and scored on a hanging layup to make it 54-38. It was never a game after that.

Key player: Stauskas was the main reason Michigan was able to separate itself from Florida in the first half. But freshman forward McGary was the player who set the tone early by scoring eight of his team's first 11 points in game-opening 11-0 run. McGary finished with 11 points and nine rebounds. Burke had 15 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists and 3 steals.

Key stat: Michigan went 10-of-19 from 3-point range.

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