LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — University of Kentucky junior, Nick Richards announced Tuesday that he plans to forego the rest of his college basketball eligibility and declare for the NBA Draft.
During the first two seasons of his career, Richards averaged 4.5 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.1 blocks over 13.4 minutes a game. During this season, Richards became an All-Southeastern Conference First Team player. As a junior, Richards led the team in rebounding (7.8 per game), blocks (2.1 per game) and double-doubles (10) to go along with a conference-high .644 field-goal percentage and 14.0 points per game. His field-goal percentage ranked fourth in the nation.
“After our win at Texas Tech I talked about how everyone who comes to Kentucky has their own path,” Richards said. “Thanks to the best coaching staff in the country and my amazing teammates I’ve continued to develop my game and improved each and every year. I told you then that I’ve had the time of my life suiting up for the best fans in the country and I stand by that."
“I’ve had the chance to meet incredible people and be pushed in all phases of my life. That’s thanks to Coach Cal, KP (Kenny Payne), Tony (Barbee), Joel (Justus), Robes (John Robic) and each one of my teammates. I want to thank Rob (Harris), Michael Stone, our trainers, the managers and everyone who played a role in my development during my time at Kentucky. I also need to thank my family and Leah (Edmond), who have always been my biggest supporters. Without you, none of this is possible." Richards said.
“My No. 1 goal when I came to Kentucky was to compete for a national championship," Richards said, "I’m sorry we didn’t have the chance to play for one this year and bring a trophy home to Kentucky, and although I’d love nothing more than to achieve that goal, it is time for me to pursue my ultimate dream of becoming an NBA player."
Here's a look at the statement he posted to Twitter: