John Beilein and Michigan have finally decided to pull the plug on star player Caris Levert, and shut him down for the rest of the season, so that he can focus on his long-term health, and onward heal up until pre-draft workouts. As a big Wolverine fan, this truly breaks my heart as he would’ve been the guy to carry us far into the NCAA tournament, and sadly I won’t see that happen.
Last season, Caris Levert was projected to be a first round pick in the draft. But after re-injuring his foot from a stress fracture he suffered the year before that, Levert elected to stay for his senior season.
He had some high expectations for this season. As well as being projected as a lottery pick in this year’s draft, he was also on the Wooden Watch Top 25 mid-season ranking. He certainly played to the hype as he had astonishing numbers with 17.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 5.2 assists leading the Wolverines in each category respecivley.
Then it all went south when Caris fell awkwardly rolling his foot in a game versus Illinois. Levert would miss 11 games, and the Wolverines would have a record of 6-5. Levert came back for only one game, but soon after hit a major setback leading to the shutdown for the season.
Caris Levert has the potential to GREAT. He’s literally the complete package. He has excellent size for a combo guard at 6’7, with a great wingspan, meaning he’s an excellent defender, great passer, solid shooter, you name. With his basketball sense, he is so versataile. You can put him at point, at the 2, and even plays Small Forward very, very well.
The reason his stock is dropping a bit, is not just because of his injury history, but his toughness. I completely understand that a stress fracture is awful, but he didn’t show any grit throughout this process. There was plenty of times where he was cleared to play (the MSU game), but he elected not too. That shows a lot about his character, and that is that he doesn’t want grind it out and suck it up. Scouts look at that, and they see that he doesn’t have that mental toughness to stick it out, he’ll be waiting a long time to hear his name called.
As a huge Michigan, it kills me to not have him on the court in the BIG 10 Tournament, and even the NCAA Tournament. I really wanted him to carry us to victory, but I really hope that he’ll fall to the right team, and become great in the NBA.
Projection: Not a lottery pick anymore, late first-round, early second round.