AL HAMNIK: U-M's McGary, GR3 need to stay put another year

2013-04-13T17:45:00Z 2013-11-26T20:08:49Z AL HAMNIK: U-M's McGary, GR3 need to stay put another yearAl Hamnik Times Columnist nwitimes.com
April 13, 2013 5:45 pm  • 

An open letter to Michigan's Glenn Robinson III, Mitch McGary and Spike Albrecht:

First of all, thank you for saving the 2013 NCAA tournament with your inspired and uncontentious play. What a great storyline. You made the region proud, as well as fans who respect the game.

There was a brief moment the first half against Louisville where you had five freshmen on the floor -- Glenn, Mitch, Spike, Nike Stauskas and Caris LeVert. And during another stretch, freshmen scored 26 consecutive Michigan points.

The NBA draft is now on everyone's mind as several "experts" have Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. leaving. Robinson and McGary have been ranked in the 20s among the country's top 100 prospects, with the 6-foot-10 McGary considered a first-round pick.

I don't want to step on anyone's childhood dream, but Glenn and Mitch would be better off staying in Ann Arbor another year and having their stock take off like a rocket.

Glenn, at 6-6 and 210 pounds, your game still has some holes in it. You need more upper body strength as you found out battling Louisville's front-liners. You can't be hesitant in creating your own shot, not that you need to be the next Nate Robinson. One of him is enough.

You lack that "beast" gene but it shouldn't stop you from taking over games at the small forward spot.

Character. Work ethic. Coachability. Shooting touch. Basketball IQ. No problems there, GR3.

But there are no guarantees at the next level and do you want to risk that?

Mitch, there are too many bigs in the NBA who flame out early or are one-dimensional. Don't be that guy. Another year of college ball would provide needed maturity and help to refine your game.

Become a dependable free-throw shooter in crunch time. Develop a steady 10- to 12-foot jumper in the paint. The dunk and your baby hook aren't enough to dominate at the next level, like you did in the NCAA tourney.

You made Michigan's run to the Final Four a memorable run, and had fans on their feet until the very end. Your game has an SUV feel to it but the gas mileage is suspect -- having played only four games of 30-plus minutes.

Another year at Michigan and you could be a top 4 pick, probably higher.

Spike, we know you're staying at U-M. Your 3-point shot and court savvy could be a ticket to NBA gold in another year, so don't rush it. The money will still be there.

You're a crowd favorite and already being compared to a young Steve Nash. Take a bow. No blushing, please.

Players have until April 28 to enter the draft unless they applied to the NBA undergraduate advisory board. In that case, they would need to decide by Tuesday.

The Wolverines were a pleasant surprise this season and with another year of growth and our region connection intact, could be in the national title hunt once again.

I'm just saying ...

This column solely represents the writer's opinion. Reach him at al.hamnik@nwi.com

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