The Michigan Wolverines men’s basketball team is having a moment of deja vu. They brought in elite talent in their freshmen class while gaining some experienced talent out of the transfer portal. They’ve looked like they could beat anybody while also losing to just about anybody. They started ranked but fell from the top-25. They are 6-3 and their sixth win was a dominant one in their first early conference game.
It appears the only difference we have seen so far is a pretty major one.
After losing to No. 19 Kentucky in London, the team announced that starting points guard Jaelin Llewellyn will miss the rest of the season due to an ACL injury. It’s safe to say a lot of us questioned what that meant for the team moving forward. The position wasn’t deep to begin with after losing Frankie Collins to Arizona State. So that leaves the next man up.
Freshman Dug McDaniel had his first start against Minnesota last night, scoring 15 and dishing out seven assists en route to a 90-75 win over the Golden Gophers. Is he the answer Michigan needs? Can he get Michigan back on track? Now that he has been called to a higher workload, can he maintain success?
Much like a year ago, we were in a moment of wait and see. Once again, there isn’t a reason to sound the alarm quite yet. What have you seen in Michigan’s latest efforts that have led you to believe this can still be a successful season? What have you seen that leads you to believe otherwise?
The Wolverines have three games left in the calendar year before entering conference play in January. The biggest game left in the non-conference is North Carolina. The Wolverines head there in two weeks for the Jumpman Invitational. The Tar Heels also fell from the AP’s graces, but this remains a must-win game for Michigan. How do you think the Wolverines will end their last three games? Can they leave 2022 in a better position than how they started?
It’s clear the Wolverines have a lot of talent. But it also feels like something is still missing and once they figure things out, they’ll be set. What does Michigan need to hone in on to get back in the conversation and be a top contender in the Big Ten? Does this team have the capability right now to be a tournament team later this season? Or is it too early to tell?
After everything you have seen, what are your expectations for the team this year? Share with us your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!