Ohio State center Trevor Thompson has withdrawn from the NBA draft and will return to school for his redshirt junior season.
ESPN’s basketball insider Jeff Goodman made the initial report of Thompson’s withdrawal from the draft, then the Buckeyes announced his intentions of returning on Twitter.
When redshirt sophomore Trevor Thompson announced his intentions on March 26 to test the waters of the NBA draft, it caught many by surprise. Per a new NCAA rule, players are permitted at any point to enter the draft and work out once with each team. Provided that player doesn’t hire an agent, he maintains NCAA eligibility. Thompson was the only Buckeye to take advantage of this rule.
The OSU men’s basketball program has had quite the turnover from last year’s team. Along with the departures of two coaches and the hiring of assistant coach Chris Jent, losing true freshmen Mickey Mitchell, Daniel Giddens and A.J. Harris to the transfer market — freshman Austin Grandstaff also transferred back in December — left a depth issue on coach Thad Matta’s team for the 2016-17 season.
Although it was widely thought that Thompson would return for his redshirt junior season, the confirmation allows the team to firmly prepare for next season with Thompson as its starting center. OSU returns its top six scorers while welcoming in four true freshmen.
Thompson, a transfer from Virginia Tech, sat out his first season in Columbus per NCAA transfer rule. The big man appeared in all 35 games in his redshirt sophomore season, starting in 28 of them.
The 6-foot-11 center averaged 6.5 ppg and 5.1 rpg in 2015-16.