This is building to be a great recruiting cycle, having so many top players considering Michigan some are more than likely very serious about Michigan.
Now we just need to land a couple of them!
I like big dunks and I cannot lie.
I understand that this is premature no matter what, given that Juwan hasn’t landed any of these guys, but does the fact that we’re in on so many top players validate some critiques about JB’s recruiting? I was always willing to give Beilein the benefit of the doubt, but this provides some evidence to me that we could’ve been in more top battles if JB were more flexible (recruiting and system wise).
Obviously there are other significant differences between the two as coaches, but I’ve been under the impression for a long time that Michigan wouldn’t be able to compete consistently with UK, Duke, etc. without getting its hands dirty and I’m now very open to the possibility that I was wrong. (There are many caveats to this, but this cycle has really made me reconsider a few prior assumptions. It’s also possible I’m just following recruiting more closely right now, too, and that is playing a role.)
No but it may mean that Juwan is a great recruiter. Here’s hoping.
I think most understood that JB’s process meant we would not be as active with a significant portion of top 40 players as other coaches, despite our success on the floor. There were just alot of posters that were okay (myself included) with this process because of the results on the floor. I don’t think there were many saying that Michigan was not capable of recruiting higher ranked prospects.
Agreed, that’s definitely better framing and better captures how I felt at the time. Though I’ll say my expectations for how Michigan could recruit have already begun shifting under Juwan, and that’s why I’m opening up to the critique that the program could’ve been even better under Beilein if he had been more flexible.
This is less a solidified opinion and more a thought I’m willing to entertain (which surprises me). Will be happy to assess and re-assess as more evidence comes in.
My main rebuttal is that those top kids, even if recruitable, still want to be featured. That’s antithetical to Beilein’s culture and philosophy. He recruited kids that were team players (for the most part), which was critical to his on-court success. So I don’t agree that higher ranked kids would have improved the situation on the court. It may have, but it may well have been detrimental…this past season as a guide for a how a team that has the pieces can fail to put it together when there are chemistry issues.
That’s the number one thing I had in mind with my “other significant differences between the two coaches” comment. Sure, JB probably wouldn’t connect with Josh Christopher or most of these top kids, but he might have had a decent shot at a few more top guys every cycle.
That’s totally fair. I can’t argue at all with JB’s proven track record, and the only thing I can offer are fantasies and hypotheticals. Though I’m not sure last year really proves your point given (a) how incredibly successful the team was all things considered and (b) the issues we had getting over the hump, in my mind, were as much about the roster/roster construction as they were about personality issues.
If Juwan Howard lands multiple five-star recruits, it says a lot about Juwan Howard as a recruiter. Getting into a top five or top eight doesn’t really mean much in all honesty.
The bigger point is that recruiting is 85% (?) about the head coach. Juwan Howard is going to recruit very differently than John Beilein. Kids will be drawn to Juwan Howard for very different reasons than they were drawn to John Beilein. The fact that Joshua Christopher is intrigued by Juwan Howard’s pitch doesn’t mean that he would be at all interested in John Beilein’s pitch.
The school matters to an extent and obviously Michigan is a big brand, but it is not the only thing and not always the most important thing.
Hopefully we get one of these bigs.
Too early to tell but just my take but Coach B recruited a certain type of player that fit his system. Until we see what Coach Howard runs and where that system takes us its all speculation.