This week the Wolverines basketball program made some news by losing two players from the squad in sophomore C Ricky Doyle and senior PG Spike Albrecht. The two were granted their releases from their scholarships this week, so they could transfer (Albrecht being a grad transfer).
These moves came under plenty of scrutiny as some believe John Beilein ushered them out the door. However, both look to make the moves themselves after seeing what the future held in terms of playing time.
Ricky’s release was made public only hours after Spike’s. In my opinion, this was probably in his best interest for him. Doyle is a player with great potential, but I do not think Michigan is quite the place for him to grow, mostly due to him being buried on the depth chart.
In two years at Michigan, Doyle started 30 games and showed promise early on, and played in nearly every game, except for only a couple. Towards the end of the season though, Doyle’s playing time greatly decreased, and was almost non-existent in the tournament due to the emergence of freshmen Moe Wagner. And when Doyle did see the court, his time was usually limited and came with great criticism from the Twitter verse.
It is college sports and yes, I know it is a big deal to people’s brackets but no kid should have to see that just to play the sport he loves, while also getting an education. Here’s to hoping Doyle lands in a great spot and goes on to have a great collegiate career.
Albrecht quickly became a fan favorite at Michigan with his enthusiasm on the court and his hilarious off court antics. Whether he was putting up the memorable 17 points in the national championship game or tweeting at famous supermodel Kate Upton, Spike is just a fun guy to follow.
Unfortunately, Spike became injury prone towards the tail end of his career. He had to have his season cut short last year due to a hip injury and medically retired this season because of it. But that’s where things got a little strange.
Spike received some really good news, when he learned that his playing career was not over and he was expected to be able to play for his 5th year. Michigan though couldn’t be certain of his availability and has senior Derrick Walton Jr. returning, along with highly touted recruit Xavier Simpson coming in. There just wasn’t enough guaranteed time for Spike, which is a tough blow for both the player and program.
The Wolverines fan favorite has already had many teams looking at bringing him on board next season which means he’ll likely land at a perfect spot. Wherever Spike ends up, he is sure to make an instant impact on and off of the court and off. It’s just too bad it won’t be in Ann Arbor.
Both players have bright futures ahead of them and all you can do is wish them the best.
What do you think of the transfers? What is your favorite moment from either player? Should Michigan have kept either one? Let me know in the comments below!
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Tony Ding
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