It has been almost three years since Daniel Horton
has been on any sort of NBA radar, but the Wolverine senior is capping off an up and down career with a fairly solid senior season. The high point of Horton's time in Ann Arbor may have come last Tuesday night, when he poured in 39 points and his Wolverines took down Illinois in a win that likely secured an NCAA Tournament berth.
Horton was all over the court, draining threes, hitting floaters in the lane, and getting to the basket. He scored 25 in the second half alone, including a personal 9-2 run after Illinois had come back and taken the lead midway through the half, and the last eight points of the game. Horton made all eight of his free throws, and was five of seven from beyond the arc. If you want to talk about heroic senior performances, you won't find many better than this.
Of course, there is a reason why a guy with every physical tool in the book is projected by most to go undrafted. Ever since an encouraging freshman season, Horton has been plagued with bouts of poor shot selection, awful decision making, and off the court issues. The volatile nature of Horton's game reared its ugly head on Saturday, when Horton put in a 4-16 shooting, 6 TO stinker in Michigan's loss at Ohio State.
Game-to-game inconsistency aside, Horton is having by the far the best season of his career, currently posting personal bests in assists (5.5), Ast/TO ratio (1.51), FG% (43.5%), and 3pt% (39%) - all the areas that have been serious issues for him in the past. Horton's natural strength, athleticism, and streak scoring ability are sure to get him a chance with the NBA this spring, likely starting with the seniors NBA draft camp in Portsmouth if he is wise enough to accept his bid. He is likely headed to the NCAA Tournament for the first time, and a nice stretch of games more like Tuesday's and less like Saturday's would likely cause scouts to forget about the past two seasons very quickly. Daniel Horton
is definitely a player to keep an eye on this March.