Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Wolverine Wednesday: Caleb Confusion

The list of NBA Combine invites came out last night.  Moussa Diabate is on the list and Caleb Houstan isn't.   Caleb also isn't on the G-League combine list, where you'll find former Michigan guard Eli Brooks.   So that seems strange.  

Then reports started coming out that Caleb declined the NBA Combine invite.  Which also seems strange.  Caleb and Moussa both left early to get NBA feedback.  Both are rarely seen on any mock drafts and it would seem likely they both would want to use the NBA Combine as a showcase for feedback on draft position or needing to go back to school.   Unlike the NFL, you don't leave early to be a 2nd round pick or a UDFA. 

There are issues with both players' international status and getting NIL money if they stay in Ann Arbor, so it's not an apples-to-apples situation to what Hunter is in.  Michigan plays every game on TV and has much better exposure than staying in 2-star hotels and long bus rides in the G-League. 

So, what is going on with Caleb?

I have two guesses:

1. Let's be honest, Caleb had a disappointing season last year.  He didn't shoot well and his defense was lacking (even though it got better as the season progressed).   If you're going to draft or sign Caleb it would have to be on his upside from his high school tape.   He needs to come back to school and maybe Caleb got that feedback and just wants to focus on getting better for his return to Ann Arbor. 

2. Some have guessed that Caleb already has a guarantee to be drafted by an NBA team and part of that agreement is to not to participate in the Combine.  Since he just declared a few weeks ago, this is the most likely scenario.   Caleb probably looks great in an empty gym workout and maybe could be a developmental project for one of the better NBA Teams looking for the next Jordan Poole.   

There are reports he is not injured, so that doesn't seem to be the reason.   Another thought is, Caleb could be willing to play overseas and already has an agreement to do that.   A great year overseas could make him more money and increase his draft status against worse competition. 

I'm guessing we will find out soon. 


Brady2017 said...

I used to love college sports for the purity of the game. Sadly that is changing.

szanreno said...

That said...

Chowman said...

Not to throw shade, but if he does leave, it's not like UofM will struggle to find someone to plug in and replace his inconsistent shooting and below average defense. The NBA is littered with the career corpses of guys who were made promises, and when it became apparent it would take longer than a year or 2 to make a guy into a solid rotation guy, they bail. The NBA is ruthless, coaches and front office people have a small window to win or its on to the next regime. For every Jordan Poole, there are a dozen DJ Wilsons. Part of the reason I find the NBA unwatchable is that the skill level has eroded.