D.J. Wilson This Year

After the first few games this season it looks like we will definitely be talking about Wilson and his growth this year so figured let’s start a thread for it.

Now not to take it for granted that the competition hasn’t been stellar just yet and we will definitely be facing tougher front count compitition going forward and especially into the Big Ten but Wilson seems to have put something together this year. He really had nowhere to go but up but he seems to have embraced the energy guy role. Great effort on the boards so far, again against less then stellar comp but regardless the effort is definitely there. Maybe just maybe it has clicked finally for him and I’m glad to see it. It would be a definite plus going forward this year!


P.S.: Those shorts got to go though lol!


Marquette is no cupcake.

If he keeps rebounding and protecting the rim like this, then he can wear a Speedo as far as I’m concerned.


He is playing like a boss out there.

He lacks lateral quickness…


Kid is healthy, filled out and confident. Plays D, rebounds, athletic, GOOD lateral quickness and shoots the deep ball. Love it.


He truly changes this whole team. Being able to bring Duncan off the bench is huge. Smu is not a big team either so our bigs have to come to play tomorrow and with Walton playing bad today, hopefully he has a big bounce back game tomorrow.

Something must have clicked. Last year he seemed like his role was to come in, float around, and chuck threes.

This year you can see the intentionality he has when playing defense. Even if he’s not blocking the shot, he’s altering them and tracking the ball much better. Then on rebounds…sheesh…it’s night/day difference in him attacking the ball and going to go after it.

It seems like he’s taking pride in being that good role player rather than wanting to come in and be the hero.

Ironic thing is, it helps his entire game. He’s getting 3’s, put backs, alley oops, , etc.

1 Like

Saw it mentioned on mgoblog so don’t want to take credit, but he does kinda remind you of Dennis Rodman. Play with energy, grab all the rebounds, block some shots, hit an occasional jumper and dunk the ball (and ofcourse wear crazy short shorts).

Just an unreal turnaround for the guy. Tomorrow will be a much stiffer test as smu has some big dudes that can jump. He puts up a similar game tomorrow and I think it’s times to jump on the hype train.

How the hell did this jump in play come out of nowhere? Literally all we got alluding to this is Beilein saying he was the best rebounder on the team. Lol, no insiders/practice observers saw this coming at all. I am very impressed. Completely changes the outlook of this team.

1 Like

Announcers tonight mentioned Wilson is Rodman like too.

I was in a Vegas sports book for the game and heard a Marquette better yell, “Who the hell is #5?! He’s everywhere!”


Not as talented physically, and taking longer to develop, but DJ Wilson reminds me of former Wolverine and Detroit Henry Ford star, Maurice Taylor. Not a guy you want creating on his own but he has potential to be a knockdown spot up shooter, and a force on the boards.

1 Like

I liked him from when we were targeting him as a HS senior.

Loved what I saw from him at last years open gym before the season. I called him the best player on the floor including Levert, but it was just open gym. I guess the light just didn’t go on for him last year in game.

Maturity, strength, confidence has set in. This was also Donlon’s personal project. So far so good.

1 Like

It’s really not THAT big of a surprise that he’s contributing. The numbers are a bit higher — and are likely to regress a little come conference season — but heading into his Freshman year Beilein talked about him being able to contribute (but he was forced to play out of position at the Center spot and then got hurt/redshirted), heading into his Sophomore year Beilein talked about him being able to contribute (but he was still miscast as a depth Center option and was behind the curve when finally moved to the wing mid/late-season), heading into this season Beilein talked about him being able to contribute.

Biggest differences: he’s not cross training at two positions with different reads (so he can focus on the mental part of just one position/one set of reads), he’s now playing a position better suited for his body, and he’s physically stronger after 2yrs in a college conditioning program

I get more Maceo Baston vibes. Regardless I am glad that we are making these positive comparisons

Yeah, Wilson was a top 100 recruit by two of the four big services (and a fringe 4-star, 122 on 247 composite) with offers from Zaga and Cal – with highlights including going toe to toe with Rabb one game – and this is basically his second year playing. He always had length and skills. The fact that he’s contributing this year isn’t shocking to some of us. But his play so far this year is clearly above expectations, and let’s wait a few games before we starting counting on this kind of play. I fully expect off-games/rough moments/bad matchup for DJ this year – foul trouble, questionable threes, bad TOs etc. But with Duncan Robinson there too, the overall view for forward is looking pretty bright.


One of the unsung – or under-mentioned – aspects of Wilson’s play is the trickle down impact on Irvin.

If Wilson can establish himself as a reliable 18-20 min/game option, that’s 18-20 mpg that Irvin doesn’t have to defend the opposing 4-spot/big forward. Irvin is a more natural fit defending the 3-spot and it’s less physical punishment on his body.


What is astounding me is his ability to move his feet and stay with smaller guards all the way to the rim and then alter the shot. Not to mention he looks like a pumped up swol boss out there. Unlike no tone Donnal who looks like he slept with a pacifier last night.

1 Like

Definitely beat the most optimistic pre-season prediction on this board. What sets him apart is his ability to defend both parameter and post with his length and athleticism, and he has offensive skills to go along. Suddenly, we have a stretch four in an offense designed for stretch 4s and has not had one in a decade.

Wilson’s emergence completely transforms this team from undersized to a big team. This front court, none of them superstars, can match-up well against any big ten opponents with combination of motor, length and skills. Irvin, undersized at 4, can bully most wing players with his physical strength.

He’s played 30 and 34 minutes the past two games, I think he’s more than an 18-20 min/game option on this team, lol.