Udoka Azubuike Withdraws from 2018 NBA Draft, Will Return to Kansas

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 30, 2018

SAN ANTONIO, TX - MARCH 31: Udoka Azubuike #35 of the Kansas Jayhawks reacts against the Villanova Wildcats in the second half during the 2018 NCAA Men's Final Four Semifinal at the Alamodome on March 31, 2018 in San Antonio, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Kansas center Udoka Azubuike is planning to withdraw from the 2018 NBA draft class. The post player announced on Wednesday that he will return to the Jayhawks for his junior season.

Jeff Goodman of ESPN initially reported the news.

Azubuike announced his intention to enter the draft last month, but he didn't hire an agent to maintain the option to continue his collegiate career.

The 18-year-old Nigeria native averaged 13.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.7 blocks while shooting a remarkable 77 percent from the field to lead all Division I players.

Azubuike previously told Gary Bedore of the Kansas City Star he was hoping to receive a first-round guarantee in order to remain in the draft.

"Pretty much, I'm not in a hurry," he said. "If it is going to take me another year or whatnot, according to what the NBA says, (then) I'm going to go by what the NBA says."

Azubuike's return bolsters an already strong Kansas roster for 2018-19. Bleacher Report's Kerry Miller ranked the Jayhawks second last month in an initial ranking for next season.

A strong campaign should put him in position to land in Round 1 of the 2019 draft.

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