The Wolverine

June-July 2016

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Page 43 of 139

BY CHRIS BALAS M ichigan basketball's 2016 recruiting efforts had more twists and turns than a Tom Clancy novel and al- most as much suspense. There was a decommitment — the first one John Beilein recalls suffering in his 38-year coaching career — in five-star shoot- ing guard Tyus Battle and yet another impressive late-stage pickup in four- star point guard Xavier Simpson. The Wolverines added two centers instead of just the one most expected them to take, and they watched many of their Plan-A targets end up at other schools. But at the end of the day, Beilein said his four-man 2016 class is a "great" one, and one on which to build. He seemed in good spirits fol- lowing an injury-riddled season that ended with an NCAA Tournament loss to Notre Dame, his demeanor brightening when he talked about the future. "Even with [sophomores Ricky Doyle, Aubrey Dawkins and Kam- eron Chatman] transferring, we have all five starters back," Beilein said. "At one time we thought we'd have everybody back, but now we have five starters and some bench players. That's some great stuff to work with going forward, and I love our 2016 class coming in. "We're open to any possibilities that come forward now." That included graduate transfers, other transfers or perhaps even an- other class of 2016 addition. U-M missed out on one of the former when Columbia's Grant Mullins — who averaged 13 points per game in the Ivy League — opted for Cal over the Wolverines, but Beilein didn't rule out another addition — or further attrition — at the beginning of May. Wing, in particular, is one area the Wolverines will look to bolster, and May is generally a time when kids finish school and change their minds when it comes to where they want to spend their fifth years, Beilein noted. He's looking for someone who could come off the bench to score and guard people. "Let's look at all our options, see Buckeye State Boon Ohio Trio Leads A Top-30 Recruiting Class

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