The Weekender: Michigan Turns Away Caleb Love, EA’s College Football Game Will Feature Real Players and Kelvin Sampson Flirts with the NBA

The Weekender: Michigan Turns Away Caleb Love, EA's College Football Game Will Feature Real Players and Kelvin Sampson Flirts with the NBA

Love Hurts

After announcing his plans to become a Wolverine in early April, former North Carolina guard Caleb Love is now back in the transfer portal.

Rumors swirled that Love began to have second thoughts about coming to Ann Arbor when All-American Hunter Dickinson bolted. As it turns out, that wasn’t the case at all; Michigan’s admissions department denied Love because of an issue with the transfer of his credits.

This is hardly the first time that the admissions office has stood in the way of the Wolverines making a key addition to their basketball program. Purdue’s Nojel Eastern wanted to play for Juwan Howard in 2020, but was rejected for the exact same reason as Love. A year ago, Terrence Shannon Jr. seemed ready to throw on the Maize and Blue, yet ended up at Illinois after a messy situation centered around his academic status. Papa Kante – a four-star prospect in the 2023 class that was committed to Michigan – recently reopened his recruitment after what many believe was an enrollment problem.

It had already been an absolutely brutal offseason for the Wolverines. Their best player ditched them for Kansas, Kobe Bufkin and Jett Howard left for the NBA and even Joey Baker isn’t returning. Michigan fans desperately needed a glimmer of hope, and instead were met with more bad news.

Love was not the answer to all of the Wolverines’ issues, but the March Madness hero certainly would have brought some intrigue and excitement to campus. Now that he’s headed elsewhere, it’s going to be a long season for Michigan.

Gamers Rejoice

Sports fans celebrated on Wednesday when news broke that EA’s college football video game – set to be released in the summer of 2024 – would feature real players.

The vast majority of eligible athletes will undoubtedly choose to be included in the game, and some might even undergo a face scan to make their virtual appearance accurate. These are sweeping changes from the NCAA Football 14 game, which simply showed a player’s position and jersey number instead of their name.

Several schools, including Wisconsin and Northwestern, were once hesitant to join the party. But with NIL details now squared away, more and more teams are committing. EA wants every FBS school to participate, and that seems like a legitimate possibility; over 120 programs are already on board.

The initial announcement of a new installment in EA’s college football series happened over two years ago, and it sparked a frenzy among former Heisman trophy winners and the sports world at large.

It’s been a winding road since February 2021 to get to this point, but it’s safe to say the anticipation has not faded one bit.

Sampson Pondering A Change

In the midst of negotiating a new contract to stay at Houston, Kelvin Sampson reportedly interviewed for the Milwaukee Bucks’ head coaching vacancy.

The interest is eyebrow-raising on both sides. Sampson is one of the elite coaches in the college game and the Cougars are perennial title contenders. Both Jarace Walker and Marcus Sasser could be first-round picks in June, only bolstering his chances to land top players in the future. Sampson has clearly found a home with Houston and now would be a strange time to jump ship.

So is he just using Milwaukee as leverage to draw a bigger check from the Cougars? That seems like part of it, but the 67-year-old coach also has real ties to the Bucks and the NBA. When Sampson was banned from the collegiate ranks for five years, he immediately landed on Milwaukee’s bench as an assistant. He spent three seasons there and built a relationship with current general manager Jon Horst.

Bringing in a college coach would be a risky proposition for the Bucks, especially with an all-time great at the peak of his powers on the roster. Making the leap to the NBA mostly worked out for Brad Stevens and Billy Donovan, but proved to be disastrous decisions for guys like Fred Hoiberg and John Beilein. If Milwaukee does go with Sampson, it will be fascinating to see where he ends up on that spectrum.


“I Don’t Know What You Did, But James is Going To Pull The Trigger Today”: How Ohio State’s 2024 Commits Are Embracing Peer Recruiting

When the dust settles, Ohio State may own the best 2024 football recruiting class in the country. The responsibility of attracting elite talent normally falls on a team’s coaching staff, but the future Buckeye players themselves are doing all they can to help out.

The Choir Invisible

Offensive numbers are getting gaudier, and programs with archaic philosophies have been left in the dust. Ryan Day’s scoring machine in Columbus is at the forefront of this movement. Can Ohio State’s defense survive long enough on the big stages to reverse the shortcomings of last year?

The Saga of the Fielded Turf Shows Why Player Input Matters More Now Than Ever

The playing surface is becoming a main storyline at every level of football. As Texas moves from turf to grass, the evidence is clear that athletes’ voices are incredibly powerful and influential in this day and age.

What’s Next

  • Men’s Tennis: NCAA final vs. Virginia, Noon,
  • Men’s Track & Field: NCAA Prelims, Wednesday and Friday, All Day
  • Women’s Track & Field: NCAA Prelims, Thursday and Saturday, All Day
  • Men’s Golf: NCAA Championships, Friday, May 26 – Wednesday, May 31, All Day
  • Rowing: NCAA Championships, Friday – Sunday, All Day
  • 104 Days Until: The football season opener at Indiana
  • 125 Days Until: Ohio State goes for a home-and-home sweep in South Bend
  • 153 Days Until: The Buckeyes host Penn State looking for their seventh straight win in the series
  • 188 Days Until: Revenge in Ann Arbor

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top