No, Parker Won't Return

He's been Northwestern's Point Guard for the past 3 years, but last Spring, after a visit to his brother Tony in San Antonio, he decided to declare for the NBA Draft. But an injury last week raised the question of his return. Now there's official confirmation...

The Daily Northwestern had it right, but there was just enough other information out there to suggest that Junior Point Guard T.J. Parker might be planning to return to Evanston for his Senior season with the NU Wildcats.
The question of T.J.'s return was raised when the Chicago Tribune and other sources kept talking about him returning for his Senior season. Some reports said he had hired an agent, other reports said he planned to play in Europe next year, others said he would be able to return. But Purple Reign has confirmed that officially, T.J. Parker will forgo his Senior season and play professional ball next year.

T.J. Parker was the kid who always seemed to have a smile on his face but who could slash past a defender in an instant to get the ball to the basket. He seemed to be the first PG that Bill Carmody really trusted to run his modified Princeton offense when he arrived at NU from Lisle HS.

But his play in 2004-05 was up and down. He had 19 against Minnesotat, but all of his career highs were scored in previous years. He finished the season averaging 9.7 points and 2.3 assists per game. He finished under 60% in free throw shooting, and had 54 turnovers, for a 1.3 Assist to TO ration.

He shocked NU fans by announcing for the NBA draft immediately after the 2005 Spring break, taking fans and the basketball team by total surprise.

His position will probably be taken by Michael Jenkins, who has been offered a scholarship to return for his 5th season, and down the road, by one of several freshmen who all have a chance at the job in the future.

Craig Moore, last year's lone freshman signee is a natural point guard, and Brandon Lee, who will redshirt next year, also has Point Guard experience.

Parker is expected to sign later this summer with a team in Europe, probably in France.

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