It’s been a wild ride for Michigan and its sophomore center, Moritz Wagner.
Just two weeks ago, the Wolverines’ charter plane slid off the runway en route to Washington D.C. for the Big Ten tournament. Since then, Michigan has won said tournament — with four victories in as many days — and reached the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet Sixteen, where it plays Oregon on Thursday night in Kansas City, Missouri.
Wagner recounted all of it in a piece for The Players’ Tribune, posted Thursday.
The story’s headline, “Still Alive,” works two ways, of course.
Wagner recounts the moments when the plane was skidding down the runway — “Oh no, I think,” Wagner writes. “Oh, God. Oh no. This is actually happening. We actually might die.” — to the evacuation:
“And man … it’s crazy. I’m pretty much running for my life,” Wagner writes. “We evacuate onto the wing, while the plane is still moving. (Like, with the engine still going and everything.) Then we climb off (only a few feet, without the wheels) — and, as soon as we hit the ground, we straight-up book it. I’m telling you: We’re sprinting as fast as we can, as far away from that plane as we can get.”
And, of course, Wagner writes about the Wolverines’ storybook run, which has drawn a nation’s attention because of how it all started.
“So call us a 7 seed if you want,” he writes. “Call us an underdog if you absolutely … positively … have to. Call us a Cinderella if you don’t really understand what the term “Cinderella” means (like, at all). And call us “white collar” at your own risk. But don’t call us a surprise.”