Moe Wagner declared for the 2018 NBA Draft on Saturday morning, opting to forego his final year of college basketball eligibility. Wagner, who helped Michigan reach the National Championship Game in the 2018 NCAA Tournament, made the announcement in an essay for The Players’ Tribune.
While Wagner wrote about his NBA dreams, he also had plenty to say about his time in Ann Abror in the essay titled “Thank You, Michigan.”
All dreams sound crazy…
— Moe Wagner (@moritz_weasley) April 14, 2018
The Wolverines faithful were one of the first groups Wagner acknowledged.
I’ll miss the unbelievable fans. When I was in Germany, I thought I had some sense of how big a deal the Michigan fan-base was — but the truth is I had no idea. Michigan fans … they’re everywhere, man. That’s what’s so unique about this place. Like, not just at the Crisler Center. I’m talking everywhere. Like, when we made it to the Sweet Sixteen, in Los Angeles? I couldn’t believe it — but the building was maybe 80% Michigan fans. Our fans are the best, and the most passionate, and the most loyal that I’ve ever seen. When you’re wearing maize and blue, I’m telling you, it’s like every game is a home game. And I just want to let everyone know how thankful I am for their support. Because — as much as anything else — I think it was playing for these fans that really gave me the confidence I needed to grow as a player.
Wagner also thanked multiple Michigan teammates from his three-year run with the program and coach John Beilein.
I just love our team. No doubt, many years from now when I’m Old Guy Moe, I’ll look back on this season as one of the best years of my life.
…Coach B would have us practice our body language. He’d have us practice walking into and out of the huddle. He’d even have managers practice acting like fans who would be heckling us — to test our focus during timeouts. It’s wild, right? The highest-stakes moment of any of our lives … and the truth is, I think we mostly all just felt super calm and prepared. Jordan will be the hero forever for that shot against Houston, and he deserves it. But I’m telling you: Without the little things that Coach B had prepared us for all year, the season is over. That play never happens.
And Wagner reflected on what Michigan meant to him, even if he thought it sounded “corny.”
I know this school means a lot of different things to a lot of different people … and maybe this is going to sound corny. But to me, Michigan will always be this place where, if you work hard enough, and you work together enough — you can become your best self.
Wagner, a 6-foot-11 German-born forward, is projected as a first-round pick in the latest Land of 10 NBA mock draft.