On Sunday, the Michigan Wolverines got some exciting news as star big man Hunter Dickinson announce he would be forgoing the 2022 NBA Draft and returning to Ann Arbor for his junior season. He’s already put together two All-American level campaigns and will now return for another campaign with the Wolverines and Juwan Howard.
During his two seasons in Ann Arbor, Dickinson played in 60 games and averaged an impressive 18.6 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game last season. He averaged as a highly rated recruit and has lived up to the hype, earning Big Ten Freshman of the Year honors in his first season with the program and second team All-Big Ten honors last year.
While it’s unusual to see a player of Dickinson’s caliber return to campus, you have to think this could be a sign of things to come in today’s world of college basketball. Dickinson has a professional future in basketball somewhere, but really isn’t a major NBA prospect right now. If he was fortunate enough to get drafted, it would be at the tail end of the Second Round and he would have to earn his spot from there. Instead, he can return to Ann Arbor, get some guaranteed NIL money, and build his brand. It seems like a much better option.
And, obviously, it’s big news for Michigan. Regardless of why he might be returning to school, it’s huge news for the Wolverines. Dickinson will enter next season as one of the preseason favorites for Big Ten Player of the Year and should play with plenty of highly capable players alongside him. Michigan is still waiting on a few other NBA decisions, but Dickinson’s return will instantly keep the Wolverines relevant next year.
We’ll have to wait and see how things shake out, but Wolverine fans have to be excited about Dickinson coming back to campus. Expect Michigan to once again make some serious noise.