UNC’s Meeks to return for his senior season

North Carolina forward Kennedy Meeks (AP File Photo/Jae C. Hong)

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – University of North Carolina junior forward Kennedy Meeks will withdraw from the 2016 NBA draft process and return for his senior season in 2016-17, the UNC Athletic Communications office announced Wednesday.

Meeks, a Charlotte native, has averaged 9.4 points and 6.5 rebounds and shot 55.4 percent from the floor in 104 games at Carolina.

“I’m thankful I had the chance to explore my draft options, but I’m excited about the opportunity to rejoin my teammates and work toward having another outstanding season at UNC,” Meeks said.  “I appreciate the support my coaches and teammates gave me during this process as we gathered information about my professional opportunities at this time. The feedback on what I have to work on so that I can have a great senior year, help my team have a great season and be ready to take that next step is invaluable.”

Meeks needs only 19 points to become the 73rd 1,000-point scorer in Carolina history.

“Kennedy did the right thing in taking the time to see where he stood with the NBA Draft at this point in his career, an opportunity we encourage all of our players to take,” Carolina head coach Roy Williams said “I think Kennedy’s made the right decision in returning to school to finish his degree and put himself in better position toward playing professional basketball, which is his dream. If he works hard this summer, he can have a big-time senior season and also help our team reach its goals.”

New draft rules make it easier for players to test the waters and still retain their college eligibility as long as they don’t hire an agent and withdraw by May 25.

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