March Madness: Bubba Wallace Tells Tennessee to ‘Keep the Heads High’ After Tough Loss to Michigan

by Samantha Whidden
(Photo by Jamie Sabau/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)

Following Tennessee’s tough March Madness loss against Michigan, NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace decided to offer some inspirational words to the Volunteers.

“Bummer for the squad,” Bubba Wallace declared after the Volunteers lost to the Wolverines 76-68 at the March Madness event. “Was fun to watch this season. Keep the heads high, fellas!”

According to Sports Illustrated, Tennessee went from winning the SEC championship and being No. 3 overall, to losing against Michigan, which was No. 11 prior to March Madness. The Volunteers made it through to the second round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. 

Tennessee freshmen guard, Kennedy Chandler notably tallied 19 points, nine assists, and four rebounds in the March Madness event. He was in tears in the handshake line. Michigan coach, Juwan Howard ended up comforting the young basketball player. Speaking about the Michigan coach post-game, Chandler stated, “He’s a great coach. I love him. And he told me to keep my head up and that I played my heart out.”

Chandler previously played basketball alongside Jett Howard, the Michigan coach’s son, in fourth grade. Meanwhile, the Wolverines will continue on with March Madness. They are heading to the Sweet 16 and will be facing the winner of the No. 7 Ohio State vs. No. 2 Villanova game. 

Michigan’s Basketball Coach Juwan Howard Talks Making the NCAA Tournament and March Madness Brackets 

During a recent interview with the Wolverines Wire, Michigan Basketball Coach, Juwan Howard, opened up about the Wolverines making it to the NCAA Tournament this year. “Super excited for our team that we get an opportunity to play in the tournament. It was great that where we’ve been seeded, thought it was well-deserving. Our players have worked extremely hard and have earned the right to be a part of the NCAA Tournament.”

When asked if he follows March Madness “bracketology,” Coach Howard declared, “No, no, no. I only control the controllable. I didn’t follow with the bracket predictions. If you listen to a lot of the chatter that happening here, everyone’s entitled to their opinion. Everyone is entitled to what they feel [about] who we play. Where we seeded. If our players should be a part of it or not. Everybody’s entitled to their opinion.”

However, Howard noted that at the end of the day, he was just waiting to see what the selection committee decided. In regards to how the team will respond during the March Madness chaos, the coach added, “it’s a new season now. This is the postseason. We’re going to work on a few things we feel we can improve on to prepare to face our opponent.”

Howard goes on to add that he has loved the Michigan team from Day 1.  “I loved our team when there was some challenges that we faced. Learning how to play together. Learning a new system.”