Handicapping the back of Michigan's rotation



Beilein has a history of having a short bench, but then he has a history of not having a deep one either. He tries them all out in the fall and then shortens the bench as play indicates. Next year will likely be different because the starting five will need help in shooting the 3. Whoever can do that will get chances to play even late in the year, I believe, and many of the best prospects for doing so are on the bench. I also believe that it will induce more role flexibility than often seen in college teams. Go Blue!


I think Brooks is most likely to be a guy who can hit 40% from 3 off the bench this season. His 25% last year from 3 had little to with his shot and much to do with his confidence and adjustment to talent level. I can see him paired with Simpson or Poole and spacing the floor.
Castleton will only take minutes from the 5, if he takes minutes at all, and then only later in the season. Early on I think weight room will take precedent over game time.
DeJulius may take role I foresee for Brooks, it wouldn’t surprise me but I would bet against it. Barring injury I don’t see a rotation spot for both Brooks and DeJulius.
Nunez: I don’t have a clue.
Johns, I think it’s safe to say will have a role


Castleton is a five, that’s the only place I ever see him playing during his time at Michigan. He has a lot more upside than Austin Davis though, which is why I think he could find a role.


IMO–Johns will be in the rotation come January and Castleton will be the surprise contributor this season.


There is a good possibility that we will end up with a mostly 7-man rotation. Anyone who is not on the list yet has to show that they are too good to be left out. CC might get into the rotation in the late season but that would be at the expense of Davis/Teske. Brooks can get minutes if he can shoot from outside, Nunez the same story but he has to shoot even better, DD and Johns have even more to catch up.


7 seems too small. Starting 5 + Iggy and backup big gets you to 7. I imagine Zaviers going to need time off the court, which means either DD or Brooks will be part of the rotation, that gets you to at least 8, which I think is the minimum. Johns or Nunez would add to that…


As mentioned by a previous poster, the roster in March will be different than November. We’ll need a three baller for a deep run and i expect someone to step up. More than any team in recent memory i believe this could be one of the best rim attacking teams…which should open the three. We’ll see!


By the time the Big Ten season really gets rolling, the best bet is that we’ll have a regular 8 man rotation. I think all of the freshmen will play, but at this point, I wouldn’t bet on any of them other than IB to be a starter or first tier backup. Most interesting will be the competitions between Brooks and DeJulius and between Johns and Livers. The freshmen could eventually push their way past the more experienced guys. Neither of them got off to a great start in Spain, but these were games against pretty good competition, in a foreign country, and on a trip where they were not allowed any practices, and had to basically just show up and play. Not easy for a freshman to get their game feet under those circumstances.


Livers has proven he can shoot the 3. We need 3 point shooters. Livers not playing a significant amount is not a likely option, imo. I do wonder how the DD/ Brooks competition will pan out. And I do think Johns is a heck of a talent who might play a good amount of minutes but I doubt it will come at the expense of Livers’ minutes.


Having Livers take a healthy leap from first to second year would certainly be the ideal situation. Then the question becomes where would IB’s minutes come from? If his performance in Spain is any guide, he may be too good to limit to 15 minutes a game off the bench, especially if we’re struggling to generate offense. If I had to pick my ideal (subject to change once we get into the schedule), I’d have Poole, Matthews and Livers getting 28-30 minutes a game, and IB filling in for each of them 8-10 minutes a game. That’s almost certainly spreading Iggy too thin and isn’t likely to actually happen, but regardless, I think determining how IB best fits into the rotation will be one of the key questions to be answered in November and December.


I wonder how this will work out as well. One possible scenario might be that Poole plays some of his minutes at pg and Iggy plays more 2 guard. Not sure if that would work defensively as Poole and Iggy are probably weak links defensively. Can’t wait to see how JB puts the pieces of this puzzle together.


This. Johns is too talented in certain areas to not see the floor in some capacity. I’m not sure how or who’s minutes get sacrificed. I’m guessing Johns will play mainly at the 4/5 so Livers, Teske and Iggy will at points share minutes with him. But he’s freakishly athletic and naturally talented. Once he gets a feel for the system on both ends he will find minutes. It will be a roller coaster to start the year for him Ithink minutes wise. Some games he could play 15-20 and others maybe 5. He has a nose for scoring too and can shoot when set. Wouldn’t be surprised if Michigan ran a lot of Pick and Pops with him to get him shot opportunities this year.


I was talking about the same lineup. it really depends on the match-ups against the opposing team. But Iggy does not have to defend a quicker smaller guard, Matthews can, and he does not have to defend the opposing three if Livers can.


not sold on Johns having a role on the team yet, he needs to find a way to settle down and smooth in.


I wouldn’t discount the possibility that Johns takes away minutes from Davis backing up the 5. He’s not a classic back-to-the-basket type (of course, neither was Wagner), but he has a broader skill set and is more athletic. That may not happen right away, but I can see him slowly getting more PT as the season goes on.


That’s kind of what I was getting at. I think Johns will be the best option for Michigan if they want a stretch 5. He can be used off the pick and pop like Wagner was. It may take time for him to learn the system though.


Johns has the talent, but it could take him a while to contribute. Wagner was behind Doyle and Donnal as a freshman. I hope, by the end of the season, either Johns or CC will play solid minutes at 5.


Absolutely. I’d say late January hopefully is a reasonable target for Johns to hopefully start getting a bigger role. I just think his size, skill and athleticism is too much for Michigan to not use because we have guys that are bigger but more cumbersome and post oriented, and we have strong skilled guys but they are all 6’7 or smaller. Johns is the best blend we got of a true inside-out player with the size to battle inside and the skill to cause issues for most other bigs out on the perimeter.