Michigan Basketball Center Vlad Goldin explains why he came to Michigan Basketball

When Dusty May took over as head coach of the Michigan men's basketball program, it was assumed that he would bring several FAU players with him. In fact, May brought in just one Owl, and a big one – literally. 7-foot-5 center Vlad Goldin was the only FAU star to come to Ann Arbor. Goldin comes to Michigan as a projected center and knows May's system inside and out. Last season, Goldin averaged 15.7 points and 6.9 rebounds in 25 minutes of playing time per game.

Goldin recently appeared on an episode of Defend The Block and talked about his relationship with May and why he chose Michigan.

The Russian center began his college career at Texas Tech with current Michigan wing Nimari Burnett. Goldin played one season with the Red Raiders before playing the next three seasons under May. Goldin got better every year and there were many schools that wanted Goldin to play for them in 2024, but Goldin chose Michigan. Why? Because it's the University of Michigan and he's familiar with the coaching staff.

“First, it's a great program, it's always been attractive because it's Michigan, it probably has one of the greatest sports histories of any NCAA team,” Goldin said. “And the second reason is the coaching staff. I prefer a relationship over anything else, so it was a pretty big deal for me.”

When Goldin decided to come to the United States to play basketball, he had to make a big sacrifice. He couldn't see his family for five years, and that's not easy. But Dusty May was a big help to Goldin. Goldin said May is now his family and one of the people who made him feel at home during his time at FAU.

“It's hard to say how influential (May) was on my entire career, but he was family to me,” Goldin said. “I haven't seen my family in five years, but he's probably one of the people who gave me family, who made me feel like home, and that's incredible.”

Vlad Goldin

March 25, 2023; New York, NY, USA; Florida Atlantic Owls center Vladislav Goldin (50) kisses a piece of the net after a 79-76 win over the Kansas State Wildcats in the NCAA East Regional final at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Photo Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports / Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

May has publicly stated that he wants Goldin and fellow 7-foot-4 Yale transfer Danny Wolf to each play 25 minutes per game. There is a scenario where the two play together, but Wolf sees the “5” when Goldin is not on the court. Goldin said he doesn't care how many minutes he plays per game, he just wants the team to win and be successful. So far, Goldin said, the team has looked great in the limited practice sessions and everyone is playing hard.

“Everyone is so good,” he said. “It's crazy that we had a couple of practices, a couple of first practices. And everyone is fighting, everyone is playing so hard. It's incredible because you can't teach someone to play hard. You can't teach someone how to be competitive right away. Or you have it yourself or it's developed over a long time. And I liked that it was the first practice and everyone was ready to play and go full throttle. So it's incredible how everyone is ready.”

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