The Michigan Wolverines got their man. Top in-state target Brandon Johns committed to John Beilein and the Michigan program this afternoon. Johns chose the Wolverines over fellow Big Ten programs Indiana, Purdue and Michigan State.
Throughout Johns recruiting process Michigan had been heavily involved in Johns from the start. Johns is rated the No. 54 player in the country and the No. 1 player in Michigan on 247Sports. Johns will join a 2018 Michigan recruiting class that has one other commit in three-star point guard David DeJulius.
Now that the Wolverines have added Johns, what can we expect from the top in-state forward? First off, Johns brings size at the forward position at 6-foot-8, 206 pounds. Johns has the potential ability to play on the perimeter as well as battle in the paint.
On the AAU Circuit Johns played more on the perimeter. He showed that he can put the ball on the floor and get by defenders and finish at the rim. He also demonstrated the ability to knock down three-point shots, which makes him a difficult matchup.
Although most of Johns play is on the perimeter, he also showed on film that he is capable of playing in the paint. On his highlight reel he displayed his ability to use his strength, athleticism and quickness to score in the post. Johns post moves will need to some fine-tuning at the Big Ten level as opponents will match his strength and athletic talents.
What’s intriguing about Johns in a Michigan uniform is that his offensive skills fit so well with Beilein’s system. Jonhs has some similarities in his game to former Michigan forward and 2017 NBA Draft first-round pick D.J. Wilson.
Johns doesn’t have the same size as Wilson (6-foot-10, 240 pounds), but with added strength, weight and continued development, Johns has the potential to be a Wilson type player. And in a few years we could see Johns develop into a major matchup problem in the Big Ten just like Wilson was.
Johns rare combination of skill and athleticism is what makes him very tough to guard with just one player. Here’s some of his highlights:
When Johns finally arrives on campus he will likely earn big minutes right away. Michigan’s roster at the moment is lacking forwards. The Wolverines roster outlook includes plenty of guards as well as Moritz Wagner and other unproven big men.
Adding to their roster this coming season is Michigan’s 2017 recruiting class that includes Isaiah Livers, who has a similar skill set to Johns. Once Johns arrives in 2018, we could see Beilein shuffling minutes between versatile forwards Livers and Johns. That sounds like a good problem to have.