first of all im tired of people acting like MAAR cant pass the rock… they haven’t asked him to do that JB wants him to attack the rim and he does so …I bet if the ran the offrense through him we’d be a much better team he reminds of a less athletic westbrook…
Attacking the rim doesn’t mean not passing the basketball–indeed, often, when you attack the rim and draw defenders, it is the best opportunity for a player to get assists by getting the ball to the player left open by penetration. MAAR has gotten better at this, but he’s still a ways from a good passer.
MAAR is a good player. He’s a tough kid with nice moves and touch near the basket, an improved jump shot, and a great motor. He has improved dramatically since he got to campus. I’m very happy to have him. However, he is not, IMO, our best player, nor did he save our season last year, nor does he remind me in any way of Russell Westbrook.
vert well said
I agree. I like MAAR as a solid perimeter defender and B1G caliber supporting option on the offensive end. I don’t like the thought of him being a primary option on offense, but if MAAR’s a slash the lane 2b/3 option w/outside shooters like Irvin/Robinson/Donnal opening the lane… that’s not bad.
He can be an emergency PG in injury/foul trouble situations and MAAR’s shown an ability to shoulder 30min work loads w/o a drop in compete level, which a useful sign on a team that likes to go 8-deep.
One of the team problems last year was that we had to use MAAR in an emergency as a point along with Dakich because of the Spike injury issues. MAAR can certainly bring the ball up the court in most situations but the team does not run at optimal efficiency with him running the point and getting the team into its offense.
I am hoping that X is ready for any and all bench point duties.
I don’t disagree with what you guys are saying per say, although you are selling him a bit short imo overall.
The thing is the question was " who is our best player going into next year. " just because you guys prefer him as a side kick wing or as a Crawford like six man means nothing to the question. Hell id love it if that’ was role too because that would mean we’d be an elite team in the country. I think every team in the country would love maar as their six man.
That said I agree with the pro maar poster. I think everyone is forgetting the fact that maar saved our season in a lot of ways. He’s also a way better passer then stated here. As mentioned he hasnt been asked to pass or distribute. We were so desperate for buckets and points off of the bounce and to the rack/ ft line that no one asked him or he wasn’t looking for the passes. He certainly can do it if asked. If you named Walton or Irvin I’d be ok with it, but I think maar is our best all around player.
He certainly is our most valuable imo as he’s the only threat we have to the rim.
When he’s not out there are offense has no one off the bounce. I gotta go to work but I’ll outline why he’s our top guy later. Certainly our most valuable as he the only threat to drive on offense.
Irvin is the team’s best player and Walton the team’s best leader. There’s a reason he was awarded Team MVP last year. Don’t get fooled by his poor shooting early in the season when he was recovering from the back injury; look more at the 37% he shot from 3 during Conference season.
True, he hasn’t been the NBA caliber impact player we hoped when he was recruited, but look at what he actually has developed in to… that’s still better than anyone else on the UM roster right now.
Walton is a very good college PG. MAAR & Robinson are solid supporting cast players — as is Donnal, IMO.
Wagner may be able to develop in to an elite player. Simpson I hope can develop in to a B1G star. But both have to show it for more than 1 game a month before I can buy in to them being better than Irvin.
I don’t think there is an argument about who is the best player on the team based on output. It would clearly be some combination of Zak and DW. What I personally think though is that a lot of this is them getting opportunity and developing at a certain pace with that opportunity. If we are looking at a new year, putting more opportunities on the table, I would rather give that chance to develop to others who may be able to rise to a higher ceiling if given the chance, rather than give it to two stable, but relatively lower ceiling players who have clear flaws.
I don’t think Mo has shown me that he’s better than either of the other two, but he has shown a lot of potential (typical high PER low mins player worthy of exploration), and given the usage we have given to ZI/DW with mixed results and clear limitations (Zak shot selection and DW being pretty rough inside of 6ft), I’d rather invest elsewhere bc those flaws can prove fatal. If you think this year could show that Zak and DW have fixed their flaws though I’d be more than happy to reconsider and to see it but give them a very short leash and as someone else pointed out, much less carte blanche which I imagine Donlon will help with.
Award or not, going into this year maar would be my first pick if we were picking up teams and I had first pick.
I have faith that Irvin and Walton will have good to very good senior campaigns. Are they perfect, no by no means (most who are close leave for the league). But I expect them to be amongst the leaders in the conference and they will have every opportunity to excel.
With Wagner either being the backup 5 or a starter (keep hope alive) I expect the pic and role action with the bigs to be a lot better this year which should end up with a scoring opportunities at the rim or positional opportunity for offensive boards.
Last year what we got from the 5 was in my mind more inconsistent then even Irvin or Walton. On to many occasions our bigs either could not catch a pass and when they did could not finish. When you have that happen so often as it did your distributors lose confidence in making that pass. Donnal and Wagner should be much better in that role this season.
If this happens everyone’s life gets easier. My biggest beef with DW/ZI was the number of shots taken w/o a single pass being made. Not all on them if passes aren’t caught or finished, but a better PnR should put everyone in a situation to succeed so long as they are looking for it.
I’ve always loved Walton. If he can shoot consistently he’d be my pick as top guy. What’s odd too is before he got hurt he showed signs of being a finisher. I’m surprised he hasn’t redeveloped that. Even for a small guy I thought he’d do well at the rim.
If our team reached its potential were a top 15 team all day. I think we will. I think badgers,Purdue, or Hoosiers win the division. I think msus young roster will come up short. Four or five seed for them.terrapins wild card
I think Walton is a very cerebral player, and last year he worked very hard on getting at/near the rim to try and draw fouls and get to the FT line. Problem is, either he wasn’t getting the calls, or he doesn’t know how to get the calls (if that makes sense). That’s where I think his production could see an uptick this year. I still feel confident in his outside shooting ability, and obviously his rebounding and distribution numbers were very solid last year and I’d expect that to continue as well.
Good list man, don’t have many arguments from me. Interesting that you have 4 OSU players on the list…yet there doesn’t seem to be much buzz about them. Do you feel they’re underrated going into this season?
I think their core 4 are nice individual players. I don’t think they play well as a team though and their depth is weak. They do bring back their top 6 players from a team that went 11-7 in the Big 10 and I’m expecting a leap (freshman to sophomore) for JaQuan Lyle. I’ll be interested to see where everyone slots them in the preseason.
Melo Trimble has consistently been on everybody’s list since he was a freshman. Personally I don’t see it with Melo. To me he has regressed since his frosh year (no stats to back up just what I see) and I don’t think he is a tough player. I am not surprised he did not jump to the league because I don’t think his game will translate. Just my opinion.
His shot definitely struggled this past year.
This year will say a lot about him. After losing Stone, Layman, Carter, and Suilamon, he’s going to have a LOT more resting on his shoulders and won’t have as many easy assists. If he can get his shooting % back up like his freshman year, I think he could be the leading scorer in the conference (partly out of necessity).
This is a good point. It goes without saying Walton and Irvin need to be better. Have we actually seen much through the last 2 years that leads us to believe they will? The best Irvin looked was when he was a designated shooter off the bench in 2014. Walton doesn’t really seem to thrive as being a high usage guy. MAAR has improved more than either of the above over the past 2 years but he wasn’t as highly touted either. The question for me is which player can make players better around them. I don’t think Walton or Irvin necessarily do that so the question is if there is another guy on the team that can do that. The next one for me would be MAAR imo.
I agree. To me it looks like we’re a team without a lead guard next season, which worries me immensely. The fact that Walton in reality is mainly a short 2 has been well documented, so I REALLY hope Simpson has more of a natural PG ability as a freshman.