Detroit Free Press, Trey Burke is now considering leaving Michigan for the NBA Draft. This is NOT good news for Michigan fans, not good news at all. As I talked about earlier, the transfers of Smotrycz, Christian, and Burndidge hurt Michigan significantly, but Burke leaving would be an annhilation. We're talking about going from a realistic Elite 8 or Final 4 team to an NIT/ barely NCAA Tournament qualifying team. This would be huge.
Right now, if Burke and Burndidge leave, Michigan has almost nobody that can play point guard. That's a pretty significant problem for a team that had its point guard as its highest scorer last season. We're literally talking about losing the best player on the team, and certainly the one that made the biggest contributions last season. I don't have anything against Akunne, but he's certainly not who we want starting at point guard and replacing the Big Ten Freshman of the Year. If you haven't started panicking by now, you can begin.
How likely is it for Burke to leave? It's anybody's guess at this point. The Detroit Free Press cited his father as a source for its story and he believed that Burke was "strongly considering" going to the NBA. Now, obviously, that doesn't mean it's a guarantee he'll go pro, but over the next few weeks he'll be inquiring about his draft status. What this means is that NBA scouts will basically tell him what round he would be drafted in if he decided to go pro.
I strongly believe that Burke could be a 1st round pick this season, which leaves me with a bad feeling that he's inquiring in his status. Now, whether he has a specific "cut-off" for where he wants to be drafted, I don't know, but the bottom-line is that it is a real possibility, right now. The important date to keep in mind is April 10. If he wants to return to school, he must pull out of the draft by April 10th to be eligible to return to Michigan. Right now, I'm leaning towards that he will return to Michigan, but I wouldn't estimate those odds over 50% after reading what his father said.
I'd like to be able to spin this positively, but there wouldn't be a lot of positives out of this situation. The only things Michigan fans can hope for are that Trey Burke decides to stay at Michigan, or somebody emerges that is able to play point guard for the Wolverines. Both of those are just guesses at this point, but this is a big story for Michigan basketball. If fans hope to see more banners soon, let's hope Burke "Stays In The Blue".
Photo Credit: AnnArbor.com