The Michigan Wolverines brought in a very solid recruiting class during Juwan Howard’s first full offseason cycle, highlighted by three four-stars who all ranked in the top 101 per 247’s composite rankings. Similarly ranked recruits can be on very different timelines though, and it was not surprising to see Hunter Dickinson more ready to go than Zeb Jackson and Terrance Williams.
It certainly was not an overly exciting season for the power forward Williams, who logged double-digit minutes just three times after New Year’s. The box score is not the best way to evaluate a season like his, however, as his role off the bench was more situational than the average rotation staple.
Terrance Williams Stats
Williams was a good shooter in high school and looked like a great option at the 4-spot for the Wolverines. His size makes him a good candidate to hold his own in the Big Ten, and having a forward who can hit some shots and stretch the defense is a must in the Michigan offense. While his role does not call for facilitating the offense, being able to move within the system is a big factor as well.
The reality is that Williams struggled in most of these areas as a freshman, which is not extremely surprising. At times he looked like a bit of a liability on defense, which will need to be cleaned up, and his 37.2 percent eFG rate is obviously not going to work either. That being said, there is plenty of time for him to get up to speed during the offseason and slide his way into the rotation.
With both Isaiah Livers and Brandon Johns more than capable of playing the power forward position, there simply was not a lot of need to utilize Williams last season. His most notable appearance was 11 minutes against Texas Southern in the First Round after Michigan ran into some foul trouble. The freshman held his own, but did not particularly stand out, which is exactly what Howard wanted.
It starts with shooting
The opportunity for Williams should be there in 2021-22. Livers is gone, solidifying Johns’ starting role, and the sophomore will have a chance to earn some backup minutes, along with incoming freshman Moussa Diabate. For Williams to claim the role, it really just comes down to his ability to put the ball in the hoop.
Williams shot a solid 52.0 percent inside the arc last season, which can grow even higher as he learns to attack the rim. Of the limited number of buckets he had, those were he dove to the basket were the most encouraging to see. He is likely not going to be a sharpshooter from deep, but he will need to figure out how to be more productive than 1-for-14 from three.
A successful second season for Williams may not see a ton of big jumps in the box score, but will result in an efficient rotation cog that is not a negative on either end of the floor. Another year on campus should help him improve defensively, and if he can figure out how to mesh his skill set into the Michigan offense, it would not be unreasonable to see him step into the backup-4 job next year.