Three Players Leave Michigan Basketball Program, Trey Burke Eyes NBA

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 09: John Beilein, the head coach of the Michigan Wolverines, talks with Trey Burke #3 during the game against the Minnesota Golden Gophers during the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Basketball Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on March 9, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Michigan announced Wednesday that three players have decided to leave the basketball program. Worse than that, however, may be the news that freshman star Trey Burke is considering a jump to the NBA.

Michigan basketball head coach John Beilein announced Wednesday that sophomore forward Evan Smotrycz, sophomore forward Colton Christian and freshman guard Carlton Brundidge have each decided to transfer to another school.

"We never like to see players leave the program, however, Evan, Colton and Carlton have made the decision to transfer and continue their careers elsewhere," said Beilein. "All three are fine young men with bright futures. We wish them and their families nothing but success going forward."

Of the three, the loss of Smotrycz is the biggest blow for the Wolverines. He played in all 69 games over his two seasons at Michigan, averaging 7.0 points and 3.6 rebounds while playing 19.4 minutes per game. He leaves as the fifth-best three-point shooter in school history, making 40.5 percent of his shots from beyond the arc.

"It's just a matter of what I thought was the right fit, something my family agreed on," Smotrycz said. "I don't want to say too much right now in being sensitive to the coaching staff. But it was a decision I had to make to be somewhere I was happy."

Christian was a seldom-used reserve during his two-year stay in Ann Arbor, averaging 3.8 minutes and scoring two points five separate times. Brundidge played in 15 games as a freshman, averaging 2.9 minutes.

Wednesday also brought news that Beilein's star freshman point guard, Trey Burke, is inquiring about his NBA draft stock.

"I think that, for the most part, when you have a season as a freshman like he did, the NBA, they like them young. They think their ceiling is higher when they're young," Burke's father Benji said. "Trey had some good games and a solid season for a freshman. It's going to be one of the weaker point guard drafts in years.

"I can't say he's coming back, can't saying he's leaving. If it had my way, he'd be coming back."

Burke was the Big Ten's co-freshman of the year in 2011-12, as well as Michigan's leader in both points and assists.

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