The Michigan Wolverines have added the guard help they were so desperately after on the transfer trail with Columbia’s Mike Smith announcing his pledge to the program on Friday afternoon.
First and foremost, I would like to thank my amazing Lord and savior Jesus Christ, without whom none of this would be possible. I’m truly blessed and excited to officially say that I will be a Michigan Wolverine. Ann Arbor it’s demon time #GoBlue 〽️ pic.twitter.com/cZLK7a3Xpp— Mike Smith (@Ayeyoomike__) April 10, 2020
Smith, who will play out his final season of eligibility in Ann Arbor, averaged 22.8 points per game,4.5 assists and 4.1 rebounds last season as one of the best players in the Ivy League. Smith started in every game he ever played in at Columbia, but is eligible for one more season after a meniscus injury limited him to only eight games played during his junior season.
His addition now leaves Michigan with one scholarship spot remaining in the 2020-21 cycle after a week of attrition for the program. Both guard David DeJulius and center Colin Castleton entered the transfer portal this week, along with 2020 three-star forward Jace Howard being designated as a walk-on instead of a scholarship player. That allowed the Wolverines to go from one scholarship over the limit to two under.
The Wolverines have been involved in the grad transfer market for weeks, which may have been writing on the wall that a DeJulius decision was coming. After missing out on Harvard’s Bryce Aiken, who committed to Seton Hall on Thursday, Smith was the clear frontrunner to wind up joining the team.
The starting point guard battle next year feels like it now comes down to Smith and Eli Brooks, who primarily played off the ball this past season but has started games at Michigan in his career. True freshman Zeb Jackson will also be involved as the other point guard on the roster.
With one spot remaining, all attention goes now to five-star 2020 guard Josh Christopher, who is seemingly set to make his college decision in the coming days. Michigan is considered the heavy favorite.