The Wolverine

June July 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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38 THE WOLVERINE JUNE/JULY 2018   2018 BASKETBALL RECRUITING ISSUE BY ANDREW VAILLIENCOURT M ichigan is losing fan favor- ite and star big man Moritz Wagner to the NBA, but the Wolverines may not be without a player of his skill set for long. Daytona Beach (Fla.) Father Lopez four-star center Colin Castleton — the No. 87 overall recruit in the country according to — is already being compared to Wagner. The 6-11, 220-pound big man is a two-way player that shoots 40.0 per- cent from three-point range, blocks shots and rebounds. He averaged 25.0 points, 12.0 rebounds and 5.0 blocks per game as a senior, according to his high school coach Eddie Miller. Miller believes Castleton has skills similar to Wagner's and that he can develop at a pace like the German did — something Michigan would be just fine with. Michigan head coach John Beilein and the rest of his staff have told Cas- tleton they see the comparison as well, with one caveat — better defense. "It means a lot [to be compared to Wagner] because I love the way he plays," Castleton said. "He's such a versatile player and you can see how the schools that they play, they don't know what to do or how to guard him." Castleton excels at shooting threes off pick-and-pops and pick-and-rolls. It's the same way the Wolverines got Wagner many of his three-point looks this past season. Castleton watched Wagner closely this year as he tried to mimic his game. Miller said Castleton holds all of the school's shooting records, including a drill he calls "make 30," where a player has two and a half minutes to make 30 three-pointers. Castleton, a finalist for Florida's Mr. Basketball award and the Day- ton Beach News-Journal's Player of the Year, hit 42. It's safe to say his shooting ability will fit well with Beilein's system that favors three-point shooting and cen- ters with athleticism. "I still talk about this with my parents a lot and how the decision I made was the best I could've made," Castleton said. "A lot of kids make the wrong decision and regret it, but I know I made the best decision for me." He chose Michigan for a number of According to his high school coach, Castleton averaged 25.0 points, 12.0 rebounds and 5.0 blocks per game as a senior. He was a finalist for Florida's Mr. Basketball award. PHOTO COURTESY COLIN CASTLETON Déjá Vu Four-Star Center Colin Castleton Has Several Similarities To Moritz Wagner

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