Thursday, April 11, 2013

Incoming Michigan basketball recruit, Derrick Walton Jr., sets the bar high for himself

Trey Burke is expected to leave Michigan for the NBA. It would be a major surprise if he doesn't. Cult hero, Spike Albrecht will be expected to pick up some of the slack. Which means that once again in John Beilein's tenure at Michigan he might have to hand the reins of the team to a freshman point guard.

That freshman would be Michigan Mr. Basketball runner up Derrick Walton Jr. Walton is up to the task of keeping Michigan basketball among the elite next season. Walton has been looked at as Burke's replacement for two years.

"I expect to play big minutes my freshman year," he said Wednesday. "Either way, if he stays or goes to the league, I'm excited. If he does go, it gives me more of an opportunity to play more minutes. I'll count on Spike a lot. With him there, it'll help with the transition.

"I know I'll make freshman mistakes. People will expect me to step in for Trey. My thing is not to get caught up in that. I can't be Trey. I've got to be me."

Walton averaged 25.6 points and 10.2 assists in his senior year at Harper Woods Chandler Park Academy, so the kid can play. With a high probability of stepping in for Burke, much will be expected of Walton and he will need those skills he displayed in high school. If Walton can step in and be a complement to Albrecht the Wolverines can keep this machine going for a few more years.

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