The Wolverine

February 2017

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 62 of 75

FEBRUARY 2017 THE WOLVERINE 63   BASKETBALL RECRUITING "I haven't seen him since we were really young and this tall," Livers said, holding his hand a few feet above the court. "Dave has blos- somed into a really good player. He's smart and knows what to do on the court. I think he'll improve even more." DeJulius stunned Central with 10 points in the game's first three min- utes, including a pair of long triples and a floater in the lane. He had 12 at the end of the quarter, shot 50 per- cent from long range in the first half — even his misses were on target but off the back iron — and ended the half with a steal and a 25-foot triple off the dribble at the buzzer over two defenders. He turned to acknowledge the crowd in the front row with a huge grin and a shake of his head before making his way off the court, show- ing a bit of the swagger he'd demon- strated throughout. "We knew what they were capa- ble of, and we allowed them to get comfortable," Central coach Ramsey Nichols said in the postgame. "We knew we had to stop DeJulius from getting off to a great start, and that's exactly what he did. He's a heady point guard, and there's a reason he was offered by Michigan as a junior. He runs the team well and plays solid defense. "Our guards saw tonight how a very good guard runs his team and settles them down. We have to find our leader, and we have a whole lot of basketball left to do that." East English Village fell to Detroit Osborn 75-69 a night earlier, a game in which DeJulius was held more than 20 points below his 32.5 aver- age going in. "It means a lot since we had our first loss last night," DeJulius said. "To come in and beat this tough team is a great feeling. It's good for us. The coaches got on us yesterday and challenged us, and we needed it to come out and play hard." Central, meanwhile, was coming off a 76-43 win over Gull Lake in which Livers scored 20. Livers let the East English game come to him, scoring a quiet 22 — quiet other than a one-handed alley- oop finish that brought the house down in the first quarter. He pulled down 10 rebounds and hit some key threes, including one that made it a six-point game in the fourth quarter, but his team could never get over the hump. "We know now what we have to do to get better," Livers said. "That's a good team. It will make us work harder, and we'll get better from it." The 6-8 Livers dropped from No. 120 to No. 128 in the updated Rivals 2017 national rankings despite a very good start. A McDonald's All-America nomi- nee, he helped Kalamazoo Central improve to 6-0 with 19 points, 15 re- bounds and eight assists in a 71-36 win over Portage Northern Jan. 10. He was averaging 19.5 points and 15.8 rebounds per game for 7-1 Cen- tral as of Jan. 15. DeJulius (6-0) recently moved up from No. 148 to No. 126 in the Rivals 2018 rankings. He was averaging 29.8 points per game as of Jan. 15. SIGNEE ELI BROOKS IS PUTTING UP RECORD NUMBERS Spring Grove (Pa.) High's Eli Brooks, another McDonald's All- America game nominee, had a huge week in early January, scoring 40 points (32 in the second half) of a 79-77 win over Middletown Jan. 4, and then breaking his own single- game scoring record with 46 in a 63-60 win over Central York Jan. 11. Brooks also notched 30 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists in a 70-59 win over Dallastown Jan. 6 and put up 36 in a Jan. 13 win over South Western. The 6-1, three-star was averaging 29.8 points per game for 9-3 Spring Grove as of Jan. 15. MICHIGAN IS IN FIVE-STAR MOHAMED BAMBA'S FINAL FOUR Michigan is still in the hunt for five-star Mohamed Bamba, one of the nation's top five recruits. The 6-11 big man,'s No. 4 senior na- tionally, has already visited Michigan and Texas, and he's working to ar- range officials to Duke and Kentucky. "I'm looking at everything," he said. "I think my world view towards college changes every time I step on a campus, because every campus has something different to offer." Michigan is one of his final four with Duke, UK and Texas. He's cur- rently attending the Westtown (Pa.) School, a private institution 30 miles west of Philadelphia. "As far as timetable for deciding, these two visits are crucial ones," he said of Duke and Kentucky. "Texas is more concerned about how, person- ally, I'm doing. I love them for that. Coach [Jeff] Capel [at Duke] … he has his hands full, but I'm still in con- tact with him and talk to him every now and then. "Michigan is still involved. I talk to their coaches every now and then. It's just a matter of distinguishing being in the presence of Westtown rather than being out in the recruit- ing world." One factor will make the differ- ence, he said, when it comes time to decide. "It's a matter of seeing myself as a student at X or O university, how comfortable I feel with a place and how comfortable my family feels with a place," he said. "I'll decide end of March, early April." ❏ On The Web For regular reports on Michigan basketball recruiting plus videos of U-M commitments and targets visit Spring Grove (Pa.) High guard and U-M pledge Eli Brooks was averaging 29.8 points per game as of Jan. 15. PHOTO BY JOSH VERLIN/CITY OF BASKETBALL LOVE

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolverine - February 2017