With Trey Burke's recent announcement that he is considering entering the NBA Draft, there's been a lot of controversy surrounding who would be the replacement if Burke decides to leave Michigan. As of now, because of transfer issues, Michigan doesn't have a clear-cut point guard that could fill in for Trey Burke next year. Assuming Burke goes pro, Michigan only has one person that would at least be capable of replacing him right now and that's Eso Akunne.
Now, Akunne is a decent player and I think he could develop into a solid back-up for a guy like Burke, but he is not a guy you want starting at point guard for your team, especially not right now. Yes, he's done well in a few games while here at Michigan, but he ended last season with an injury and never truly led the team from the point guard position like Burke. Yes, if he's forced into the starting point guard position next year he'll likely have more help than Burke had this year, but he is not going to be able to dominate like Burke did. He can contribute in some capacity, but I just don't see him as a game-changer like Burke, which will set this team back a lot.
As a result of this situation, Beilein and the coaching staff have begun a frantic search in an effort to find either a replacement for Trey Burke, or somebody that can play back-up now that Carlton Brundidge has left. Brundidge was Burke's backup for much of the year, but has decided to transfer from Michigan. Unfortunately, at this point, there aren't a ton of solid point guards left in the 2012 recruiting class. Yes, there are a few guys that might be able to come in and contribute right away, but they are few and far between.
Now, there are some great guys in the 2013 recruiting class, but Michigan already has Derrick Walton coming in, who should be a great point guard for the Wolverines. Along with this, any 2013 recruits won't be on campus for next season, which is the exact time that Michigan desperately needs a point guard replacement. So, in order to make this frantic search a bit easier, I've highlighted some of the likely candidates to replace or back-up Burke next season:
Amedeo Della Valle
Amedeo is a 6'3" point guard out of Henderson, Nevada and is rated as a 3* recruit by Rivals. He certainly is a talented player and his recruitment appears to be finishing. If he decides to commit to Michigan, he probably won't get much playing time unless Burke goes pro. I do think he has some potential to be a very solid player and has been recruited by some big schools including Gonzaga and OSU. He probably will be commiting to a school within the next few weeks, but I can't see him signing to play with Michigan until he sees what happens with Trey Burke (I know that personally I would want to wait). Beilein was actually visiting Amedeo last week.
Mitch McGary's team. He was named the MVP of the AAA high school tournament and averaged 9 pts and 7 assists during the season. Another important note is that he's from the same high school as Zack Novak and Novak's only had positive things to say about him. He's also noted as having few turnovers and as being well conditioned (played 40 minutes in the AAA Final).
Rivals. He is also credited with having a great basketball IQ and as a true point guard by Scout. I think he'll work out to be one of the best incoming point guards in recent memory, even including the sensational season Burke just had for the Wolverines. However, if Michigan's point guard depth depends on Walton, they're going to be in major trouble for next season.
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