Hoosiers'Jeffries heads for NBA

April 8, 2002 at 7:49 PM

BLOOMINGTON, Ind., April 8 (UPI) -- Indiana forward Jared Jeffries, who helped the Hoosiers reach the NCAA championship game, has entered the NBA draft, it was announced Monday.

Jeffries, the Big Ten Conference Player of the Year, will bypass his final two collegiate seasons.

"Two years ago, I had to make what I thought was the hardest decision of my life." Jeffries said. "I had to decide if I wanted to be a part of rebuilding Indiana's greatness. Today again I am faced with an incredible dilemma, and the dilemma is whether I want to declare myself eligible for the NBA draft.

"After hours of prayer and deep thought, with myself, my family, the coaching staff, I have decided it is in my best interest to forego my college eligibility and enter the NBA draft."

The 6-10 Jeffries led the Hoosiers with averages of 15 points and seven rebounds. While he struggled the last month of the regular season with a sprained right ankle, Jeffries had 24 points and 15 rebounds in the Hoosiers' 74-73 upset of top-ranked Duke in the South Region semifinals.

Indiana coach Mike Davis supported Jeffries' decision.

"This a once in a lifetime opportunity and I know that Jared will make the best of it," Davis said.

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