Dre's Blog: Hot 09 Hoop Targets

Now that Michigan has apparently shut the door on the class of 2008, they seem to be focusing most of their attention on the class of 2009. It's a class that is loaded in state and out of state. GoBlueWolverine has been busy compiling names and the list is far from complete, but Andre Barthwell checks in with a preliminary list of buzz-worthy targets. There are even notes on a few 2010 prospects.

As GoBlueWolverine continues to beat the bushes to establish a more complete list of Michigan basketball targets, here's a breakdown of some of the hotter names we've heard associated with the Maize & Blue in recent days. 

I repeat this is not a complete list…

In-state names receiving the most buzz…

DaShonte' Riley - 6-11, Detroit Country Day - It should come as no surprise that this young big man already has a Michigan offer (All the schools he is interested in already have).  He runs the floor very well, finishes around the basket, and is a defensive presence. His stock rose this summer after a few very solid outings on the AAU circuit.  As we said after the team camp, if he turns up that passion dial a little more watch out. The Wolverines have been out to one of his open gyms, meanwhile the youngster traveled to Ann Arbor with his family for Michigan's home football opener a few weeks back.  The competition is stiff, but the Wolverines look prepared to fight to stay in this one.

Jordan Morgan - 6-8, University of Detroit Jesuit - This young big man made his way up to Ann Arbor in recent weeks as well.  Morgan has a chance to be really good.  He's a really good athlete that moves well despite his big frame.  He's a space eater that can really clean up on the glass.  His offensive game could use some polish, but his potential is obvious.  Like Riley, with more fire this kid's game could go up a level.  To top everything off, this kid is a good student (which probably makes him even more desirable to the Wolverines).

James Still- 6-9, Detroit Community - Probably the most versatile of all the in-state bigs.  He can stick an 18-footer and can also take another big man off the dribble.  At the same time, he's the least physically developed of the in-state bigs at about 190-lbs. The Wolverines are showing Still a great deal of attention. He's already been to campus and Beilein and company look to be keeping a VERY watchful eye on him.

Dion Sims - 6-5, Orchard Lake St. Mary's - LOTS of recent movement on this front for the Wolverines.  Michigan made clear the message this week…from both basketball AND football that Sims would be free to pursue both sports in Ann Arbor.  That dispelled the suggestion from rival recruiters that the Wolverines (and Lloyd Carr in particular) would not allow it.  Both programs appear to really covet his versatility.  At 6-5 210-lbs. he is a big physical receiver with deceptive speed… and word has it that he is starting to believe that his pro-prospects may be greater in football.  Michigan State has made him huge priority, as has Miami (who coincidentally may have been the most persistent suitor to date).  Indiana and Purdue have also made waves.  The youngster has an interest in Georgia Tech, thanks in large part to the family members of his that reside in the Peach State.  The Yellow Jackets are just now starting to show interest as well.  Look for this young man's recruitment to continue to heat up in the coming months and for Michigan to be among those blitzing the hardest.

Ben Simons - 6-8, Cadillac, Michigan has had an eye on him since Beilein first took over. Ben is a kid that can shoot it from deep and can come off of screens to hit mid range shots.  His off the dribble game and lack of strength are the factors keeping him from taking his game to another level.   He should have a big year this season and will be interesting to see if he adds the aforementioned little more versatility add to his game this season.  


Next few…  

Donovan Kirk - 6-8 Detroit Country Day - The versatile forward made his way to Ann Arbor to meet with John Beilein earlier this summer.  The Wolverines were recently at an open gym to check both he and teammate Dashonte' Riley out.  Kirk is a decent face-up shooter, and extremely active in the paint area on both ends of the floor.  He can also put it on the floor.  This is a selfless player that is willing to do the dirty work… and he is definitely a Michigan target.

Keenan Coleman - 6-5 Flint Central - The Wolverines were just up in Flint last week to check him out.  His versatility is intriguing, but many are waiting to see how he adapts to the coaching of former Saginaw BV coach Chris Chaffer.  Some believe Chaffer's disciplinary style will help refine Coleman's game.  If that comes to fruition, expect him to shoot up the target list of a number of schools… including Michigan.


Now for a few out of state names receiving recent buzz…

We've already discussed California PG Darius Morris.

Michigan head man John Beilein was just in to see one of the top recruits in the country in Erik Murphy out of St. Mark’s Prep in Massachusetts. He is a 6’9 forward that can score it around the basket and would do very well in Beilein’s system. The fact that Michigan is even being thought about by this kid in conjunction with heavy hitters like Carolina and Duke is impressive. His dad recently told GoBlueWolverine, "We will be cutting the list down soon." Will Michigan make the cut?  We will see.  One thing for sure… they know a lot about Coach Beilein and his system. Murphy is a 4-star player and ranked the #41 player overall in 2009 by Scout.com.  Stay tuned to GoBlueWolverine for more on Erik in the very near future.

Michigan is also looking at Mike Dixon, a 6’1 guard out of Kansas City.  I had a chance to see him do work this summer at the Adidas It Takes Five… and let me tell you the kid can play.  .  He is rated as the #8 point guard according to scout.com…. and with good reason.  I will have more on him next week also.

Another out-of-state name generating buzz is Trent Lockett from Hopkins high School in Minnetonka, MN.  The 6-5 SG is rated a three star player by Scout.com and his AAU coach both Dave Telep and GoBlueWolverine this week Michigan is getting more and more involved as of late. Michigan assistant John Mahoney has apparently gotten the Wolverines into the thick of things here.

Maurice Creek from South Kent School in South Kent, CT has seen his stock rise in the eyes of a number of college programs, including Michigan.  The 6-4 SG, 4 star player and is ranked #45 overall by Scout.com.  The Wolverines are duking it out with Marquette, South Carolina, Pittsburgh, Texas, Maryland, Georgetown, and Miami.  GoBlueWolverine will have more on Creek in the coming weeks.


Then there are a few 2010 names generating buzz…

We profiled Nate Lubick, a 6-8, 215-pound forward from St. Mark's prep in Southborough, after the team camp and this youngster is extremely high on Michigan.  He raves about Coaches Beilein and Mahoney.  Expect Michigan to be in this race until the end.

The Wolverines were recently in the school of another 6-8 215-pound east coast big man.  Will Regan from Nichols High School in Buffalo, New York looks to be another emerging target in the 2010 class.


Again, these are just some of the names we've heard buzz about recently.  There are still other viable targets for the Wolverines (some of whom we've previously shed light on like Ben Boggs and Mason Plumlee).  Stay tuned to GoBlueWolverine for an updated hoops recruiting primer and for more on the aforementioned targets in the coming days.

That is enough for right now… although I know you hoopheads out there will say it is never enough!  Next week we will have more basketball then you can handle. Until then….dribble…dribble…SWISH!!!

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