When GoBlueWolverine caught up with Ben Cronin last night, the upstate New Yorker was fresh off of campus tour that left that left him anxious to see what else Michigan has to offer. After arriving at 6:30 last evening he was quickly whisked off on a mini campus tour that he found impressive. Even the oft-maligned Crisler Arena received a good review.
“Right now they are renovating the floor and they will be doing more to fix it up,” Cronin reported. “I really liked what I had a chance to see there.”
The most memorable aspect of Cronin’s first hours on campus, however, was his interaction with Michigan coach John Beilein. The Wolverines new headman clearly covets Cronin’s versatility. GoBlueWolverine was on hand to watch Cronin at the King James Shooting Stars Classic, and his sweet-shooting stroke was readily evident. He may not be a lights-out athlete, but he can go down low and post up, step out and shoot the three, and even put it on the floor a little bit. Beilein made it a point to explain to the youngster just how beneficial the system employed at Michigan would be to his game.
“I have always had a pretty good touch, but I need to make it more dominant in the game,” Cronin admitted. “The way Coach works with the big men on shooting drills was just great with the inside outside game. Coach showed me the workout schedule for the players and how he is working on getting them better. I also like the way the guards and the big men are running the court together. He seems to always have the big guys running and I like that.”
Cronin was already somewhat familiar with the way Beilein operates based on a prior visit to West Virginia. It was at that point that he began appreciate what it would be like to be on a Beilein-coached team.
“When I visited West Virginia I really enjoyed the way practices were controlled,” said Cronin. “Plus they work together as a team. Coach Beilein is a great guy. He seems to really care about his players. He is one of the coaches I really like a lot.”
Today Ben will visit the rest of the campus, including a tour of the academic center. Based on what he has already seen though, his feelings about the Maize & Blue are clear.
“I like Michigan a lot,” he said.
But the Wolverines are not the only ones he holds in high esteem. He also reports an offer from the hometown Syracuse Orangemen to go along with tenders from West Virginia and Buffalo. It’ clear that Jim Boeheim’s club will be tough to beat.
Cronin expressed a desire to make an early decision and cites his relationship
with the coach, how the big men are utilized, and his ability to contribute
right away as the key factors in his choice. Michigan is off to a good start
in their quest to show that they meet all of those criteria. Stay tuned to GoBlueWolverine
to find out if Beilein & company furthered that effort on day two of his