Franz Wagner has been working his way back from a wrist fracture he suffered in fall camp, which has caused him to miss the first month or so of the regular season for the Michigan Wolverines. Now, it appears the freshman wing may be close to making his 2019-20 debut as the Wolverines travel to the Bahamas.
According to a Michigan spokesperson, Wagner was a “game-time decision” for Wednesday’s contest against Iowa State in the opening round of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament. Now, he is officially in the starting lineup.
With game time in less than 30 minutes, here are the Wolverine !#GoBlue 〽️ pic.twitter.com/j7ryPVifxk— Michigan Men's Basketball (@umichbball) November 27, 2019
Wagner was expected to complete for time at forward and potentially at the starting two-guard spot, but the Wolverines’ depth has been tested in a year where they came into the campaign light on scoring on the perimeter.
Juwan Howard has been putting out a starting lineup of Zavier Simpson, Eli Brooks, Adrien Nunez, Isaiah Livers and Jon Teske in every game so far this season. David DeJulius, Colin Castleton and Brandon Johns have made up the rest of the eight-man rotation with freshman Cole Bajema getting into the last few games.
Should Wagner return, it is likely that they work him back into the rotation slowly with Howard potentially opening things up to be nine-deep off the bench. With the way Brooks has played to start the year, it seems as those he could stick at the two for now with Nunez potentially coming off the bench for the Wolverines.
Wednesday’s game against Iowa State tips off at 12 p.m. ET on ESPN.