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Phil Martelli addresses how coronavirus has impacted class of 2021 recruiting

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Martelli sat down with Ashley Bastock from The Blade in Toledo

NCAA Basketball: Michigan at Rutgers Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Like the rest of the world, the Michigan Wolverines basketball program is currently engaged in trying time due to the coronavirus. The NCAA has put restrictions down on recruiting in March that has the entire nation struggling to communicate effectively with prospective high school athletes.

Michigan assistant coach Phil Martelli did a phone interview with Ashley Bastock from The Toledo Blade and accented the struggle the program has had due to the virus.

“Everything with 2021 is literally in limbo. For this moment in time the phone is what you have, and you have to make a decision that you’re comfortable with personally, and say it really is inconsequential, isn’t it?”

The NCAA instilled a dead period for recruiting effective until April 15 to halt the unnecessary movement of recruits and or coaches amid the COVID-19 outbreak. But Martelli has been impressed with the high school student-athletes who he has spoken to.

“Even though this would be an anxious time for the 2021’s, I do think that they’re more globally aware than most people would think,” he said. “We think it’s just a self-centered kid. That’s not the case. So I think just having a voice with them is maybe momentarily comforting, because it helps me, rather than sit there and stare at a phone and stare at a list, let me just find out, hope you’re all right.”

Now is as difficult as a time as ever. Several recruiting services and player showcases have closed their doors while the virus is sweeping across the country, and both players and coaches have not been able to put in their due diligence in finding interest.

“We’re staying on top of it. But everybody feels the same way. When it’s time to sprint, we’ll be ready to sprint. But it’s not time to sprint right now. Everything is really more important than basketball at this point.”

The lack of spring exercises for universities and their respective recruits has created an impasse at this time. But, there is still hope as the time to “sprint” as Martelli would say is inevitable. While at this very moment, there are plenty of things much bigger than basketball, we will return to a day where March becomes madness (for the right reasons) yet again.

Michigan Basketball’s One Shining Moment

The Michigan Wolverines basketball season ended in a way nobody wanted it to. As Juwan Howard’s team was ripped off the basketball court in Indianapolis, their season was torn to shreds by the spread of the coronavirus. Nevertheless, there are still plenty of shining moments that remain in what was the 2019-20 season:

2022 4-star OT Gunner Givens earns Michigan offer

Ed Warinner continues to target some of the top lineman in the country to build upon some very strong offensive line in the last couple of season.

Now, they have offered 2022 4-star OT Gunner Givens from Daleville, Virginia:

Gunner is a 6’6” 275 lb sophomore in high school that holds offers from Florida State, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Oregon, Penn State, Miami, Maryland, among others. He is currently the No. 137 ranked player in the 2022 class according to 247sports.

National Brews:

  • Tom Brady posted a heartfelt message to New England Patriots fans as he closed the book on his 20-year journey with the organization after signing a 2-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
  • The NBA announced that they will not be able to make a decision about their season until May 1 at the earliest. But, ESPN reporter Baxter Holmes brought a little hope about an eventual return as he reported that the NBA and the NBAPA may make a “critical step forward” to use coronavirus testing that would be like a diabetes test and have results in less than 15 minutes. While there is hope, there is no clear timetable as to when those test could be made available to the association.
  • Legendary Detroit Tigers Outfielder Al Kaline died on Monday morning at the age of 85. Mr. Tiger played all 22 of his MLB seasons with Detroit and was a 15-time All-Star and 10-time Gold Glove winner. At 20 years old, he was the youngest player to ever win the American League Batting Title. He finished his career with 3,007 hits, 399 homers, and a .297 career batting average.