June 21, 2005
Notre Dame, Ind. -
Notre Dame forward Torin Francis (Boston, Mass.) has withdrawn his name from the 2005 National Basketball Association early entry draft list and will return to the University of Notre Dame for his senior season in 2005-06.
Francis made himself eligible for the draft on April 14, but did not hire an agent. He did, however, attend the NBA pre-draft camp in Chicago last week. Francis will be on campus for the start of summer school on June 21.
After returning from back surgery that curtailed his sophomore season, the 6-10 rising senior averaged 9.3 points (fourth-leading scorer) in 2004-05 and was the leading rebounder for the third straight year averaging 7.9 boards. Francis scored in double figures in 14 contests and grabbed 10-plus rebounds in eight games. He also led Notre Dame with six doubles-doubles. Francis scored a season-high 21 points against Rutgers and pulled down a season-best 14 boards versus Samford.
As a sophomore, Francis played in 20 contests before undergoing back surgery for a herniated disc. An all-BIG EAST honorable mention selection, he averaged 14.2 points and a team-leading 8.8 rebounds. Francis scored in double figures in 16 of 20 contests during the 2003-04 campaign and grabbed 10-plus rebounds in eight games. He also recorded seven double-doubles.
In his freshman season, Francis averaged 11.1 points and 8.4 rebounds en route to earning BIG EAST all-rookie team honors. He reached double figures in 19 games and grabbed 10-plus rebounds in 12 games. Francis set a Notre Dame freshman record when he grabbed 20 rebounds in the third game of the season against Bucknell.
Francis has started all 83 games he has played and owns career averages of 11.2 points and 8.3 rebounds (931 points and 686 rebounds). He is tied for fourth on the career blocked shots list with 126 and ranks fourth all-time with a 1.5 career average.
Enrolled in the Mendoza College of Business as finance major, he is set to graduate from Notre Dame in May of 2006.
Statement from Mike Brey:
"When Torin made himself eligible for the draft in the spring, I always felt that he was a four-year player in our program. My coaching staff and I fully supported the decision that he made at the time to explore the opportunity of playing in the NBA next year. Following the pre-draft camp in Chicago and sorting through all the information he and I have collected over the past couple of months, Torin sat down with his family and felt that it was in his best interest to return to Notre Dame for his senior year. This whole process has been a great learning experience for Torin. He's focused for the upcoming season and I look forward to coaching him in his final season.
Statement from Torin Francis:
"After exploring my options, my family and I have decided that it would be in my best interest to return to Notre Dame for my senior season and graduate from the University. I'm excited about being back here with my teammates and looking forward to having a good season from both a team and personal standpoint. I was disappointed in how we ended the season last year and I want to lead this team back to the NCAA tournament."