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Kentucky forward Alex Poythress will return for junior season

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Kentucky's Alex Poythress has decided to return to college for his junior season.

"Playing in the NBA has always been a dream of mine, but I want to make sure that I'm NBA-ready before I make that jump," Poythress said. "By coming back, I'll be so much closer to earning my degree in business, and it will give me another year to prepare my game."

Poythress averaged 5.9 points and 4.5 rebounds this season while helping the Wildcats make the title game of the NCAA Tournament. The 6-foot-7 forward was considered a likely second-round pick had he entered this draft. Either way, there are now three legitimate NBA prospects at UK -- Willie Cauley-Stein, Marcus Lee and Poythress -- who have announced they're returning to school. Meantime, freshmen Julius Randle and James Young have announced they're leaving for the NBA Draft, which means Kentucky is still waiting on formal decisions from freshmen Andrew Harrison, Aaron Harrison and Dakari Johnson. If the Harrisons return, Kentucky will likely again be ranked No. 1 in all preseason polls.


Gary Parrish is a senior college basketball columnist for CBSSports.com and college basketball insider for the CBS Sports Network. The Mississippi native also hosts an award-winning radio show in Memphis. He lives in that area with his wife, two sons and two dogs.
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