Mitch McGary still figuring out his role, and Michigan is still figuring out how to use him
ANN ARBOR -- At times, Mitch McGary still looks like a bull in a china shop.
A 6-foot-10, 260-pound ball of energy, McGary's motor rarely idles, but the Michigan freshman forward still has a tendency to speed off the tracks at times.
He's still trying to figure out where he fits, and Michigan coach John Beilein is still trying to decide how, exactly, to use him.
"We've still got those lab coats on, guys," Beilein said Tuesday after No. 3 Michigan knocked off No. 18 North Carolina State. "We're still trying to figure (it all) out."
There's the side of McGary that still seems very raw. He's the same kid who ended up getting stuck in an elevator last week in New York City, and the same one who, at times, appears to be running 100 miles an hour with nowhere in particular to go.
But then there's the other side of McGary.
The player who, on Tuesday, had the presence of mind to run the floor for an easy fast-break jam.
The guy who executed a perfect pick and roll with point guard Trey Burke for a thunderous flush, and the player who Michigan coach John Beilein trusted to have on the floor to draw a game-sealing, and surely controversial, charge call in the final minute against North Carolina State.
"Mitch gives us great energy, all the time," Beilein said. "His charge was a big point in that game.
"He's been showing great progress. He works extra with our coaching staff often. He's been showing great progress with how to play without fouling, how to play bigger."
Early in the season, Beilein said a nagging foot injury hampered McGary's ability to get himself into playing shape.
Six games in, that doesn't seem to be an issue as much, as McGary put up 8 points and 5 rebounds in 19 minutes Tuesday.
He still seems a bit wild, he's still pretty raw, but Michigan loves the possibilities McGary brings to the table.
And more importantly, Beilein loves coaching him.
"What a pleasure to coach," Beilein said. "I'm sure it won't always be a honeymoon with any guy we have, but I'm telling you, this has been really good to coach him."