We continue our player recap of the 2016-2017 season with junior guard Mitchell Wilbekin. Wilbekin had a reduced role this past season compared to his first two years at Wake Forest. Heplayed a career low in minutes (24.8 mpg) and was moved out of the starting lineup in favor of Keyshawn Woods for a majority of the season.
Coming off the bench seemed to be a great fit for Wilbekin. While his 7 points per game were slightly lower than his previous 2 seasons (7.2 and 7.3), he shot a career best 40.5% from beyond the arc. This makes him the 2nd best long range shooter on the roster returning next season.
He also had a career high in free throw attempts and shot a scorching 89% (50-56) from the foul stripe. It is pretty impressive that throughout the entirety of the season he only missed 6 free throws.
Wilbekin was once again fantastic at valuing the basketball this season. With 49 assists and just 21 turnovers on the year, his assist-turnover ratio was among the best in the ACC at 2.33.
At this point, it isn’t really news that his weakness comes on the defensive side of the ball, as he typically struggles to matchup with some the ACC’s bigger, quicker guards. With the additions of Brandon Childress and Keshawn Woods this season and Chaundee Brown next season, I think that it will be a lot easier for the Deacs to mask that weakness to keep teams from exploiting it.
So what can we expect from Wilbekin in his senior season? He’s been extremely consistent over his first 3 years as a Deac, so I really don’t expect much to change. While I wouldn’t doubt that is 3-point shooting percentage will increase again next season, I think he will continue to average around 7 points per game and continue to do a fantastic job not turning the ball over.
What do you expect from Wilbekin next season?