Dave Weaver-USA TODAY Sports
It is hard to remember how young Michigan's backcourt is at times.
There is not a single upperclassman in the Michigan backcourt. Two sophomores and a true freshman make up the starting guards, and the first man off the bench is also a true frosh. This can often lead to rough outings and silly mistakes at inopportune moments.
Look no further than the Wolverines' nail-biting victory over Minnesota for evidence.
Without a doubt, freshmen guards Derrick Walton Jr. and Zak Irvin are growing up quickly.
However, both are still learning and are going to disappear at times. For instance, Irvin's recent hot streak came to a close against Nebraska. He entered the game with a pair of double-digit outings in the last four contests. He finished with zero points on 0-of-3 shooting in just 11 minutes. Earlier in the season against No. 1 Arizona, he played just six minutes and did not record a point.
On the other hand, Walton has looked much better as of late. The Harper Woods, Mich. product went 6-of-10 from the field with 21 points in Michigan's last two games. Expect a similar outing against Penn State, but who knows what will happen when the Wolverines travel to Wisconsin and Michigan State later this month?
Caris LeVert has not been immune from inconsistency either. While he is making great strides at the defensive end of the floor, his shot is a bit erratic. In contests against Stanford, Minnesota and Northwester, he went 3-of-19. Versus Holy Cross and Nebraska, however, he scored 26 points on 11-of-16 shooting.
Nik Stauskas has been the most reliable guard of the bunch. Even when he is not scoring, he is creating opportunities for others with dribble penetration and pick-and-roll chances.
Young players are going to make mistakes. Hopefully, those errors will not come during the critical moments of Michigan's 2013-14 campaign.