Aztec Hoops: Jalen McDaniels Says No to NBA Draft, Returns to SDSU

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San Diego State forward Jalen McDaniels (5) dunks the ball on a rebound as the Aztecs cruised to a win against the Nevada Wolf Pack in the semifinal round of the Mountain West Conference Tournament. Photo courtesy of Derrick Tuskan/SDSU

Jalen McDaniels had until 9 p.m. Wednesday to withdraw from the 2018 NBA Draft, he waited until 90 minutes left to go to announce he will be returning to San Diego State for his sophomore season.

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After helping the Aztecs reach the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2015, McDaniels declared for the draft but didn’t hire an agent to maintain his college eligibility. He wanted to test the NBA waters to get feedback from NBA teams.

“After thoughtful consideration with my family and coaching staff, I have decided to return to San Diego State for my sophomore season,” McDaniels said. “I’m looking forward to furthering my education and returning to the NCAA tournament.”

With McDaniels in the mix, the Aztecs are returning three of their top-four scorers from last season from a team that went 22-11 and won the Mountain West Tournament to advance to the NCAA Tournament.

“We are excited to have Jalen return for his sophomore season,” coach Brian Dutcher said. “We are looking forward to having him help us defend our Mountain West title and return to the NCAA Tournament.”

Last season, McDaniels led the Aztecs in points (266), was second in scoring average (12.6) and averaged a team-high 8.5 rebounds.

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