Key player in Michigan’s 2013 Final Four run transfers to Purdue

Spike Albrecht helped Michigan win a Big Ten title and reach the Final Four. (USATSI)

Former Michigan guard Spike Albrecht will attempt to make one last run through the Big Ten and college basketball, announcing on Tuesday that he will play for Purdue in 2016-17 as a graduate transfer.

The 5-foot-11 senior, a star in the 2013 Final Four run, averaged 7.5 points and 3.9 assists in his last full season of health. Injuries shut down Albrecht’s 2015-16 campaign after just nine games, but the former Michigan guard told ESPN’s Jeff Goodman he expects “to be better than ever once the season starts.”

Spike’s father, Chuck, told the Lafayette (Ind.) Journal & Courier that Purdue “fits the personality he’s looking for,” citing the Big Ten, coaching and proximity to home as appealing reasons for Albrecht to choose the Boilermakers.

Michigan had an opportunity to block Albrecht from transferring within the Big Ten but later lifted the restriction. Albrecht played in 115 games during his career with the Wolverines and played a key role in some breakthrough years for the program under John Beilein. As a freshman, Albrecht played in 39 games and helped the team reach the Final Four for the first time in 20 years then the next season he played in all 37 games as the Wolverines won the outright Big Ten title for the first time in 28 years.

Albrecht joins a Purdue roster in transition, with both Vince Edwards and Caleb Swanigan declared for the NBA Draft but still in a position to return without an agent hired. If healthy, Albrecht can provide stability at the guard position for an NCAA Tournament-caliber team. If Albrecht is truly going to be “better than ever,” Purdue will have a chance to make some noise in the Big Ten title race.

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