Spike Done

Submitted by Seth on December 11th, 2015 at 9:45 AM

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[Bryan Fuller]

The worst press release ever:

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- University of Michigan men's basketball senior guard Spike Albrecht announced today (Friday, Dec. 11) he has elected to step away from the court for the remainder of the season. He will concentrate on his continued recovery and the rehabilitation process following bilateral hip surgery this past summer.

"This has been the toughest decision I have ever had to make," said Albrecht. "After taking a hard look at what is best for me, and this team, I will be stepping away from the game that has meant so much to me.

"I am so thankful for what Coach Beilein, the assistants and the medical staff have done for me during my career and in particular over the last year while I was dealing with this injury. I just have a little more to go and I really need to take the proper time to finish my rehab.

"The University of Michigan has provided me and my family so much, I don't really even have the words to express my gratitude. This place is truly special and I hope I was able to leave just a little bit of a mark during my career. I cannot thank Wolverine nation enough for all the love and support they have shown me throughout my four years here. Forever and always -- Go Blue!"

"This has been an agonizing decision for Spike, especially at this juncture of the season," said U-M head coach John Beilein. "He has done so much to get back to this point, but his long-term health is what is most important now and in the future. We want only the best for Spike.

"He is a tremendous young man, who has had a very special career. His important role in our 2013 NCAA Tournament run and his incredible performance in the national title game were straight out of a storybook. His sophomore year we would not have won the Big Ten title or made a second straight trip in the Elite Eight without him.

"He has proven time and time again what heart and determination can do. Even last year, he played through so much pain, but held the team together and guided us through tough times."

Albrecht played in 115 career games for the Wolverines. A two-time team captain, he was named Michigan's co-MVP last season after starting 18 of 31 games and posting a career-best 7.5 points per game.

As a freshman, he played in all 39 games and helped U-M reach the Final Four for the first time in 20 years as well as tie the school record for wins (31). It was his 17-point performance in the national title game against Louisville that will see him remembered for years to come.

Albrecht guided U-M to a second straight Elite Eight appearance as a sophomore as the Wolverines lost on a last second-shot to Kentucky to miss a second straight Final Four. That same season, he played in all 37 games and helped the Maize and Blue to its first outright Big Ten title in 28 years.

He would be eligible to take a medical redshirt and return next year, but from the way they’re talking about this it seems clear his career over-over. It is a tribute to Spike how much that utterly sucks.

Comments

Mr. Yost

December 11th, 2015 at 9:48 AM ^

First thought...this week fucking sucks.

Second thought...that is selfish.

Third thought...thank you Spike. You were incredible, a great representative of the program, the heartbeat of our team. Speedy recovery to you!

CanadianMamba

December 11th, 2015 at 9:49 AM ^

Sad sad post. I got to talk to Spike and aside from basketball, he really appreciated UMich for it's academics and was very career-oriented. He's very personable and I wish him the best. He was always awesome to watch on the court

CanadianMamba

December 12th, 2015 at 4:38 AM ^

He talked about the B school when we talked and was just very appreciative of all the alumni connections he'll have in the professional world and was asking me for advice.  Never acted like he was better or a celebrity, just a genuine guy.  Damn, I'm still emotional just thinking about how unfair of an ending this is for him

Erik_in_Dayton

December 11th, 2015 at 9:54 AM ^

I think I'll remember him most for the fun he seemed to have playing the game.  Some players make D1 basketball seem like a grim slog.  But Spike seemed to enjoy the game as if he'd just been asked to come out of the stands and play for his favorite team.  He was a stand-in for us fans in that way.  He'll be sorely missed.

mgobluth

December 11th, 2015 at 10:04 AM ^

Wishing a speedy recovery. Never will forget what he did coming off the bench hitting a big three against cuse in the final four, and then 17 in the first half of the championship game. A Michigan basketball legend for that weekend alone. And then we grew to love him even more as he was a steady presence off the bench and as a fill-in starter the last couple of years. I'm gonna miss the bursts of energy he gave when we needed him most.

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Wolverine In Iowa 68

December 11th, 2015 at 10:08 AM ^

Spike was one of those players who was so full of heart and life and drive, you just loved watching him play.  It's very sad his career has to end in this way, instead of him getting to enjoy his senior year on the court.  He is a rare gift, who always gave 100% of himself and he will be deeply missed.  Best of luck Spike, both in your rehab and in your life after UM.  I know you will meet it with the same drive and determination to succeed.  This won't be the last we hear of you.

 

Go Blue!

HenneGivenSunday

December 11th, 2015 at 10:12 AM ^

Well.. This sucks.. You don't always get what you earn in life. Spike earned a better ending to his Michigan Basketball career than this. That being said, he'll go far in life, and I can't wait to hear what he makes of himself in the future. I would like to nominate him for the MGoBlog Hall of Fame. Anyone with me?

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AlwaysBlue

December 11th, 2015 at 10:20 AM ^

if it's the steep hill back or if they determined it's not possible. Beilein let it slip recently it takes time to get back and some don't regain their pre-surgery ability.

He most certainly deserved a better ending but at least this seems to be on his terms.

trueblueintexas

December 11th, 2015 at 10:27 AM ^

He is a glue guy that holds the team together and also has the guts to hit big shots. A great combination.

Maybe he can teach Walton and MAAR the dribble like a whirling dervish through and around the lane move he perfected. 

Maizenblueball

December 11th, 2015 at 10:29 AM ^

Man, what a bummer! It was so much fun to watch him play. We'll always have the championship game. That first half was absolutely insane! Best wishes to you Spike. Good luck with whatever you decide to do with the rest of your life.

readyourguard

December 11th, 2015 at 10:36 AM ^

This is very sad. He was a great competitor and leader and had some of the most memorable plays I can remember. He really was a joy to watch.

Good luck kid. You won't be forgotten any time soon.

MaizeAndBlueWahoo

December 11th, 2015 at 10:37 AM ^

Crappy, crappy news.  Spike has definitely been one of my favorite U-M hoops players of all time.  Loved his willingness to jack up a shot from ten feet outside the arc and hit them.  Loved the white chocolate and nonstop energy in his game.  Just fun to watch at all times.

aiglick

December 11th, 2015 at 10:40 AM ^

Best wishes Spike and hoping for a speedy and full recovery for you.

Thanks so much for everything you have done on and off the court.

You are a fine representative of the institution we love.

Go Blue.

Witz57

December 11th, 2015 at 10:45 AM ^

I've been less sad when I younger and my kid heroes went early to the pros. Spike is what college sports, and really just being in college are supposed to be about.

a2bluefan

December 11th, 2015 at 10:56 AM ^

Is someone cutting onions in my office right now? Geez...

All the best to you, Spike. I will really miss yelling "SPIIIIKE!!" every time a game-changing three pointer left your fingertips.

 

atticusb

December 11th, 2015 at 10:56 AM ^

Looking forward to Spike becoming a regular commentator on the MGoBoards as he transitions from player to former player... bittersweet, but we'll always remember and appreciate!  Thanks, Spike!