Rhodes To Return for Senior Season

Two-time all-SEC forward Charles Rhodes has withdrawn his name from the NBA Draft in order to return to Mississippi State University for his senior season of competition. The Jackson native made his announcement Monday on the final day that early entrants could pull out of next week's NBA Draft.

"I have officially withdrawn my name from the 2007 NBA Draft by faxing the required paperwork to the NBA office," Rhodes said Monday. "The NBA put this policy in place to allow underclassmen like myself to test the draft waters, and I simply took advantage of the opportunity. I now have a better perspective on the areas of my game that I need to work on in order to improve my status for next year's draft."

Rhodes earned Coaches All-SEC Second Team honors for the second straight season a year ago after averaging 13.7 points and 6.2 rebounds per game to rank 17th and 12th in the SEC, respectively. The 6-foot-8, 240-pound rising senior also stood fourth in the league in field-goal percentage (.554) and sixth in blocked shots (1.88 bpg) in helping lead coach Rick Stansbury's 21-14 Bulldogs to a share of the SEC's 2006-07 Western Division title and an appearance in the MasterCard NIT Semifinals.

"I'm now looking forward to getting back to work and helping my teammates compete for another championship," Rhodes continued. "At the same time, it has always been a goal of mine to earn my degree from Mississippi State, and I'm in a position to accomplish that goal this coming May with another solid year in the classroom."

A two-year starter for the Bulldogs, Rhodes enters his senior campaign 87 points shy of the coveted 1,000-point mark for his career. The former prep standout at Jackson's Lanier High School also stands sixth on the school's all-time chart with 101 career blocked shots and 10th in career field-goal percentage (.560).

"Hopefully through this process, Charles has learned the importance of hard work and how it impacts his future. We now expect Charles to come back ready to help our team compete for another championship," Stansbury said.

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