Donnal has Loads of Untapped Potential

GoBlueWolverine caught up with Whitehouse (OH) Anthony Wayne high headman Bryan Borcherdt to discuss his star pupil Mark Donnal's commitment to Michigan. Borcherdt breaks down the youngster's game, his upside, his fit at Michigan, and more.


Sam Webb:  What kind of career has Mark had for you so far?

Bryan Borcherdt:  "Actually, this is my first year as the head coach at Anthony Wayne.  I was just hired about month ago.  I have taught in the district for 14 years.  I coached Mark as an eighth grader.  I've worked with him individually for the last two years.  I am familiar with what the young man can do and what he is capable of doing.  It is not like I'm new to the scene but last year as a sophomore he averaged 15 points a game and about seven boards.  He is a very gifted young man.  The upside to Mark Donnal is incredible.  He is 6'9" right now.  He is still growing.  He just turned 16 in May.  He can play inside.  He has got tremendous post moves.  He has got probably the best moves of any big guy that I've seen at this age, very strong underneath the basket.  He's got great feet, great hands.  He runs like a deer, he is quick.  His brother (Andrew) is an offensive tackle at the University of Iowa.  He is gifted athletically.  Mark can also play outside.  He has got great touch from the arc.  He will fit in tremendously with Coach Beilein's offense; his ability to post; his ability to play on the perimeter; his ability to drive to the basket.  He can kind of do all three things.  The upside for Mark is just tremendous.  I look for him to be a great college basketball player."

Sam Webb:  What was it about Michigan that made him decide now was the time to go ahead and get it done?

Bryan Borcherdt:  "I think three things… he fell in love with Michigan.  Coach Beilein's staff, they got in early and developed that relationship.  I think it came down to three things.  If you look at Michigan and you go up on there on an unofficial visit, you walk away from there, I guess the first thing that you come away is the world class academic experience that you'll have there.  The opportunity academically to get a world-class education.  That's the first thing.  The opportunity is available, the support staff.  When you graduate from there that opens doors for you that are just amazing and I think that really impressed Mark.  The second thing that really impressed them was the coaching staff.  Like I said, they have done a great job of establishing a relationship with Mark and his family.  They have been down to Toledo on several occasions to watch Mark and they have done a lot.  Coach Beilein and his staff, they are quality people and they have a vision of what it will take for Michigan to become one of the premier programs in the nation.  Probably the third thing is coach did a great job of how Mark fits into his vision and his system.  What really interested Mark was his ability to see, okay where am I going to fit in, what is their plan for me.  It kind of fits Mark's specific skill set."

Sam Webb:  When he looked at his recruitment, what were some of the other schools that were showing him major interest in him?

Bryan Borcherdt:  "Butler, Michigan State, Ohio State, Indiana, Purdue, Wisconsin and make sure if you can do this for me add the University of Toledo in there."

Sam Webb:  Had any of those schools offered him scholarships yet?

Bryan Borcherdt:  "University of Toledo has, as far as any of the other ones.. some of them told me that they were going to call today and offer, but I have not heard officially if any of them have.  The people that old me that they were, if they don't, I don't want it to get out there that they said they offered Mark.  I don't want it not to be truthful.  I haven't heard of any ones yet that have officially offered him."


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