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Moussa Diabate has the athleticism and versatility Michigan basketball needs

Diabate is an unreal talent Michigan fans will love.

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2020 NBA All-Star - BWB Camp Photo by Nicole Sweet/NBAE via Getty Images

On this week’s Future Brew, Von, Jon and Stephen discuss their initial reactions to 2021 five-star forward Moussa Diabate committing to Michigan, and break down his versatile game on the court.

Von: A very surprising commitment here, I did not see this one coming at all. Moussa Diabate is the latest commitment to join the fold here. He’s the No. 20 overall player on the composite, No. 2 in the state of Florida, he plays at IMG Academy, and the No. 6 power forward. Obviously Juwan is trying to go position-less basketball, but for all intents and purposes, he is going to be the big of the 2021. Jon, what was your initial reaction when he committed, because I was very thrown off by this.

Jon: Yeah, I was completely surprised, too, like everyone else. I first heard it when Stephen sent it to our group when we were planning the podcast. But yeah, I don’t think he was considered one of the top guys that Michigan was looking for at the center position, at least in terms of likelihood that he would commit to Michigan. I think guys like Efton Reid were kind of seen as more likely candidates, so it’s nice to get a genuine shock that a five-star kid is gonna come out of nowhere and commit to Michigan like that. It kind of solidifies their ranking — Kentucky and Duke are gonna get their kids in the class and they might end up passing Michigan, but I think it solidifies Michigan as a top five class at the very least.

Stephen: I think the first thing that stands out (about Diabate) is he’s still catching up to his athleticism. Obviously at 6-9, 6-10 he’s physically imposing, and he’s starting to figure out his ball-handling skills, and that’ll unlock a lot of his potential on offense. When I started watching his film, and I do it when I watch football film as well — I try to look for the single eye-opening play. The one for me was about a minute into his film — he’s on the perimeter, does his shot fake, gets a four- or five-star he’s playing against at this tournament, gets him to jump, drives the lane and then dumps off a no-look pass to someone on the block down in the key. This is a 6-9, 6-10 guy who can threaten the outside, has enough speed and ball-handling to get into the lane, and then enough vision to drop off a pass to a teammate in the lane as he attracts more defenders. And there were examples of that throughout, but his passing ability at that size really makes him an intriguing prospect.

Listen to the full discussion below.

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