Michigan Basketball Recruiting: Breaking Down the Top Remaining 2015 Targets
Michigan coach John Beilein just put the finishing touches on his 2014 class, which means he now has plenty of time to shift his focus to the yet-to-be-assembled 2015 haul.
As of early July, the Wolverines remain in contention for some of the country's best prep talent. Gaining a verbal pledge from one of them is the next step. According to VerbalCommits.com, Beilein has one spot to fill for next year.
This slideshow will take a look at a handful of the most interesting—and most interested in Michigan—targets left on the trail.
Caleb Swanigan (5-Star Center)
According to 247Sports, Caleb Swanigan has "cool" interest in Michigan. The scouting service's crystal ball predicts that the elite prospect will commit to Michigan State, which already has a superb two-man collection for next season.
Swanigan would top off any school's national signing day, especially Michigan's. As the following tweet demonstrates, suitors are lining up to get a piece of the 6'8", 265-pounder out of Fort Wayne Homestead in Indiana. He has fleet feet for a big man and a developing, versatile scoring touch.
Don't mistake him for just a center. There's a small slice of 2-guard hiding in that massive frame.
Jalen Brunson (5-Star Point Guard)
Well, they did it. The Wolverines have kept themselves in the hunt for Jalen Brunson, the No. 3-ranked point guard of 2015, according to 247Sports' composite rankings. The nearly 6'2", 190-pounder out of Adlai Stevenson (Illinois) has whittled down his list to a select few.
Or maybe he formed a new, expanded list? Either way, Beilein's in there.
Temple, along with UConn, Michigan St, Illinois, Kansas, Villanova, Purdue and Michigan, make up Jalen Brunson's current list.— Chip Miller (@BLUEChip_Miller) July 3, 2014
Brunson is a dart. He weaves with grace, stops on a dime, shoots well and can pass. In short, he's the dual-threat point guard Beilein loves. Sure, Beilein wants a guy who can distribute, but judging by his recent stars, he's looking for a 1 who can fill it up when needed.
Brunson is a spectacularly gifted athlete with great floor vision. Scoring is a strength, but he's an efficient facilitator too.
Jalen Coleman (4-Star Combo Guard)
Once an athlete reaches a certain level, doing one thing very well usually won't cut it, nor does it guarantee minutes. However, if said player has the ability to excel at multiple disciplines, getting on the court with regularity usually isn't an issue.
Imagine Jalen Coleman in Ann Arbor. The 6'3", 160-pounder out of Indianapolis' La Lumiere School is the nation's No. 29-ranked prospect (No. 4 PG), per 247Sports' composite rankings, and he can play the point and the 2. Michigan has been known for its lethal shooters from the perimeter, and Coleman absolutely fits the bill.
As the accompanying video shows, he's also dangerous off the dribble. His "driver" tendencies are good, but he'll need to bulk up if he plans to challenge Big Ten opposition in the paint.
Per 247Sports, Coleman has "warm" interest in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois and Michigan State. The Wolverines have recruited well at guard, so calling Coleman a "must-get" is a bit of a stretch. Beilein would benefit far more by gaining a forward in 2015.
Dwayne Bacon (4-Star Small Forward)
So, 247Sports says he has "cool" interest in Michigan.
But that doesn't mean the Wolverines aren't warm for Dwayne Bacon, the No. 23-ranked recruit of 2015, according to 247Sports' composite rankings.
At 6'6" and 190 pounds, he's lean and lanky. But with a couple of years of maize and blue cuisine, he could easily shoot up to 215 by his sophomore year. Factor in the "freshman 15" and add 10 for the second-year effort.
Bacon can finish at the rim, shoot from all over and run the floor. If there's an open lane, rest assured Bacon sees it and plans on going to the iron with everything he's got.
Trevor Manuel (4-Star Power Forward)
Trevor Manuel is a hometown kid, but he's not.
The 6'9", 215-pound Lansing native has been near and dear to both Michigan and Michigan State for years, long before his transfer to Oak Hill Academy in Virginia. With that being said, his decision could come down to either Tom Izzo or Beilein despite being heavily pursued by Florida State and Oregon.
However, he is unsure about where he's finishing high school, and he recently said he doesn't have a favorite, per MLive.com.
6'9" Trevor Manuel, @jerrymeyer247 's #50 junior, said Michigan, Michigan St., N.C. St., Wake Forest & Xavier are recruiting him the hardest— Andrew Slater (@ASlater247) April 5, 2014
Follow Bleacher Report's Michigan Wolverines basketball writer Adam Biggers on Twitter @AdamBiggers81.
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