The Michigan Wolverines had a tremendous season, making it all the way to the National Championship game but ultimately falling to Louisville in a tight finish. Michigan was led by a handful of outstanding players including Tim Hardaway Jr., Mitch McGary, Glenn Robinson III, and consensus national player of the year Trey Burke. All of whom will eventually play in the NBA.
Burke, a 6’0, 185 pound point guard with tremendous skill and very high potential is one of those point guards every NBA team wished they had. His ball-handling mixed with his play-making abilities and the uncanny confidence when shooting the ball is what has made Burke the national player of the year. He averaged 18.6 PPG while shooting 46%, 38% from three-point and 6.6 APG with two turnovers per game. This kid does it all, arguably the best pick and roll point guard in college, he can beat defenders every way possible and his innate sense of maturity and leadership was shown by leading his team to the National Championship game. If Burke can fix the few turnover problems he does have, he has the potential to be a great point guard in the NBA.
On the defensive end is another story though, it has been like night and day for Burke between his offensive game and his defensive game. The good side of it is Burke’s wing span which at 6’5.5 helps him grab loose balls and intercept the passing lanes. The bad side is his ability to handle bigger and more physical guards and even quicker guards which gets him into foul trouble as seen in the championship game. If Burke puts in the work, he will get better defensively limiting any holes left in his game.
Burke declared for the 2013 NBA Draft after his sophomore season. He had intially declared for the 2012 NBA Draft in a weak point guard class but ultimately decided to stay in school for one more year. Burke is the best point guard available and is projected as a top 10 or higher picker. The team most in need for Burke are the New Orleans Pelicans. If selected they could pair him with another former national player of the year and starting PF Anthony Davis. Burke would fill a much needed void for the Pelicans as they are trying to re-brand and rebuild with young talented players like Burke and Davis. They need to make their fans forget their former selves as the New Orleans Hornets and the devastating loss of Chris Paul, who coincidentally Burke is most compared to.
Thanks to NetScouts Basketball Scout Derek Brennan for this article.