Nov 8, 2013; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines guard Caris LeVert (23) moves the ball on Massachusetts Lowell Riverhawks guard Akeem Williams (11) in the first half at Crisler Center. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan Basketball: Hoops Preview -- South Carolina State

GBMWolverine Basketball TidbitsPosted at 5:00pm — 11/12/2013

Michigan Basketball: Hoops Preview — South Carolina State

Michigan played about one-half of good basketball in the last two games against Division II Wayne State and first time Division 1 foe UMass-Lowell. This is not so surprising. Michigan lost perhaps the best go-to player in recent team history, Trey Burke. When the Michigan offense stagnated last year, Burke simply took it upon himself to be a catalyst to break a funk. Add to that the loss of number two weapon, Tim Hardaway Junior, and a big part of Michigan’s money in the bank offense is no longer on the court.

Nov 4, 2013; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines guard Derrick Walton Jr. (10) moves the ball on Wayne State Warriors guard Chene Phillips (0) in the first half at Crisler Center. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Glenn Robinson III and Mitch McGary were expected to step up and replace the two first round draft choices. To totally replace the aforementioned duo is asking a bit much, but McGary and Robinson will certainly improve Michigan’s stock as the season progresses.

Michigan now has a group of good wing players that can hit or miss, and then do the same thing again. The hope is the light switch is on when the shots fly.

Exasperating the situation is the insertion of freshman Derrick Walton and Zack Irvin into roles of major team control and playing time. Two other swing players, Caris LeVert and Nik Stauskas, can also run hot and cold.

Finally, Michigan’s inside players, minus McGary, have not demonstrated many skills other than dunking on a nice dish or running the floor for a lay-up. The hands continue to struggle, fouls 25 feet from the basket continue, and no real low post game is visible. The rebounding is adequate, albeit again lower competition. Still, Wayne State outrebounded Michigan.

South Carolina State is a member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. The Bulldogs are one and one on the season, having lost to Marshall and beat St. Andrews.

Look for Michigan to be a little inconsistent until the chemistry is set and McGary is back in form. The decision-making has been decent this year, the shots have not yet gone as expected. Defensively, Michigan has managed to let two opposing players nearly dominate a game, one from Wayne State and one from Lowell (both good players, but major powers should shut down one dominant player on a mid-level team.

If the guys get out and run and the shots fall, it will be fun.

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Written by GBMWolverine Staff

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