John Beilein's efforts to return Michigan to national relevance on the hardwood took a giant step forward Thursday when highly-coveted big man Mitch McGary
of Brewster Academy (Wolfeboro, N.H.)
gave the Wolverines a verbal commitment.
McGary, a 6-foot-10, 255-pound center ranked No. 2 in the MaxPreps Class of 2012 Top 100
, picked the Wolverines over Duke and Florida live on ESPNU.
"I felt like Michigan was the overall best fit for me," McGary said via press release. "I trusted the coaches the most. The program is in the rebuilding stage, and I would like to make an impact my first year and hopefully build the program back up."
A native of Chesterton, Ind., McGary's stock has skyrocketed since leaving his hometown for Brewster Academy a little over a year ago and re-classifying as a 2012 prospect. He averaged over 12 points and nine rebounds per game last season for a Bobcat team that featured seven Division I-bound seniors.
Prior to his arrival in New Hampshire, McGary was viewed as a borderline Top 100 prospect. After helping Brewster Academy go 31-3 in the highly competitive NEPSAC and consistently-dominant play on the summer circuit with the Gary, Indiana-based club team Sport Youth Foundation (SYF Players), he is now widely-regarded as the nation's top big man.
"Over the past year Mitch has improved his all-around game both on the interior, as well as the perimeter," Brewster Academy head coach Jason Smith said. "He possesses a tremendous motor and is extremely coachable."
The Wolverines have been viewed as the favorite to secure McGary's services in recent months. He will join a recruiting class that features wings Glenn Robinson III
of Lake Central (St. John, Ind.)
and Nik Stauskas
of St. Mark's (Southborough, Mass.)
. McGary was a teammate of Robinson's with the SYF Players.
It's been a busy week for recruiting at Brewster Academy. T.J. Warren
, a native of Durham, N.C., made a verbal pledge to North Carolina State on Wednesday.