Trey Burke Entering NBA Draft, Leaving Michigan Early
By Noah Trister
The time was right for Trey Burke.
The Michigan star made it official: He’s leaving the Wolverines to enter the NBA draft. The move came as no surprise after Burke was voted The Associated Press national player of the year and led Michigan to the NCAA title game as a sophomore.
Burke also considered going to the NBA a year ago, but he came back for another season. Now he departs with his stock seemingly peaking.
“I just felt like this was the best opportunity for me,” Burke said. “It’s an opportunity that I’ve always wanted.”
The 6-foot point guard averaged 18.6 points and 6.7 assists per game in 2012-13. He made perhaps the most memorable shot of the NCAA tournament, a long 3-pointer in the final seconds against Kansas that sent that regional semifinal to overtime.
Michigan made the Final Four for the first time since 1993, and in the championship game against Louisville, Burke scored 24 points in a losing effort.
Burke nearly left the Wolverines after his freshman season but decided to stay. Expectations were high at Michigan after his return, and the Wolverines lived up to them – in part because Burke’s future never seemed to be a distraction.
“He came back with really a fire in his belly to improve his game,” coach John Beilein said. “He just went to work. There wasn’t one time that I felt that he was playing for the NBA and not playing for Michigan.”
Once the season ended, it would have been shocking if Burke came back again. The main question for Michigan is how many other players the Wolverines might lose. Junior Tim Hardaway Jr. and freshmen Mitch McGary and Glenn Robinson III are also considered candidates to turn pro.