The Wolverine

April 2020

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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26 THE WOLVERINE APRIL 2020 I t seemed a foregone conclusion at the beginning of the year that redshirt junior Austin Davis would move on after the season. The 6-10 center hadn't played much, averag- ing 1.0 point in 3.7 minutes per game a year ago, and seemed mired on the depth chart behind senior Jon Teske and sophomore Colin Castleton. Slowly, though, Davis' contribu- tions picked up this year. It came to a head when he scored 11 points in a home game with Ohio State and nine at Northwestern in a win. "Austin Davis will be returning for his fifth year," head coach Juwan Howard announced in early March. "I gave him the news … and he was super excited. Just to see the smile on his face … he gave me three hugs and he held me tight, too, so that just made me know from those hugs, those were the feeling of a guy who was really excited about coming back and being a student-athlete here at the University of Michigan. "We're excited to have him back, because Austin being the great teammate he is, he's also a joy to coach. He's shown great leadership throughout this year, also shown a lot of growth on the court as well as in the classroom." Howard and Davis first met in Feb- ruary to talk about the future, after which Howard seemed conflicted. Davis, though, gave him plenty to consider, the coach continued. "We had a great meeting two weeks ago, just talked about his fu- ture," Howard said. "He shared with me that anatomy is something he [feels] really strong about. Physical therapy is another area he's really considering in the future. We talked about that as well as his future with the program on the court. "I really admire his work ethic. I really appreciated how he came out each day, approached every day in practice, working to get better as a player, surging to help his team- mates. You've seen the growth this season. We've all witnessed it. "It was an easy decision for me, just knowing we have a guy that's all in, loves being here at Michigan and loves playing for the team, and I enjoy coaching him." Sources have said Toledo was a potential landing point for him if he didn't return for a fifth year, but Da- vis always wanted one more season in Ann Arbor. Howard gave him the news in a one-on-one setting. "His production on the court, ac- cepting his role to be a reserve in   MICHIGAN BASKETBALL Austin Davis Earns, Accepts Fifth Year After averaging 1.0 point and 0.8 rebounds per game last season, Davis upped his clips to 4.9 and 2.6, respectively, this year. PHOTO BY LON HORWEDEL

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