GAINESVILLE — One week after Florida center Patric Young sat in the locker room following the Gators' loss to Michigan in the NCAA Tournament and said he was unsure of his future, he made a final decision.
Young is returning for his senior season.
"I have the chance to finish my degree and play another season for Coach (Billy) Donovan with great teammates and friends at a place I love," Young said. "These first three years have gone by in a flash, and I can't believe it is my senior year already. I have gotten better as a player and better as a man at the University of Florida. I believe God has my future in his hands, so all I am worried about now is getting better this summer and making it the hardest I have trained in my life."
Young was projected by several NBA draft analysts to be a late second-round selection.
A two-time SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Young has played in all 111 games over his three seasons at Florida. Since moving into the starting lineup as a sophomore, he has averaged 10.2 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. He will return with a chance to become the 50th Gator to join the 1,000-point club — he has 878 career points.
"We're excited that Patric will continue with us for his senior season," Donovan said. "This was Patric's decision to make, and he ultimately had to do what he felt was best for himself and his future."
Young's return means the Gators will have a frontcourt with tremendous size. Young is 6 feet 9 and will be joined by Will Yeguete (6-7), transfer center Damontre Harris (6-10), freshman Chris Walker (6-10), transfer Dorian Finney-Smith (6-8) and Casey Prather (6-6).
The Gators' senior class will include Young, Prather, Yeguete and guard Scottie Wilbekin.
Antonya English can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @TBTimes_Gators.