Michigan basketball fans will get the chance to show their appreciation for one of the most unforgettable Wolverines in recent memory on Sunday. The program will honor Austin Hatch as part of its senior day festivities before No. 22 Michigan plays No. 8 Ohio State in Ann Arbor (1 p.m. ET, CBS).
Hatch’s story is unlike any other in college sports. Hatch survived two plane crashes in his life, but the accidents killed multiple of Hatch’s family members. His mother and two siblings died in a 2003 plane crash, while his father and stepmother were killed in a 2011 crash — which came less than two weeks after Hatch committed to Michigan.
Hatch was in a medically induced coma for two months after the second accident. While he recovered, Michigan coach John Beilein made sure Hatch’s scholarship offer remained on the table. Hatch has been part of Michigan’s program since, and he appeared in five games during the 2014-15 season.
Earlier in the week, Hatch met with reporters to discuss what the senior day moment will mean to him.
“I don’t think it’s an accident I ended up at a place like Michigan,” Hatch said, according to 247Sports. “I don’t think there was any better place I could’ve been in the country given the circumstances. I don’t think there’s a better man that I could have played for. He’s taught me more about life and that’s the ultimate measure of a coach. A good coach wins basketball games and you can see the results and the impact he has on his team.
“But the impact he has on developing his players as young men, I know I’ve definitely grown as a man and I’ll take lessons I’ve learned from him for the rest of my life.”
Hatch was warming up with the team on the court prior to the showdown with Ohio State.
— Michigan Men's Basketball (@umichbball) February 18, 2018