Downey announces he will return to USC

COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina men's basketball player Devan Downey announced on Saturday that he has withdrawn his name from the 2009 National Basketball Association's draft pool and will return to school for his senior season in 2009-10.

Downey earned numerous postseason awards, including First-Team All-SEC by the league's coaches and the Associated Press, while he also earned Honorable Mention All-American accolades by the AP. He secured another impressive season in the statistical categories in 2008-09. Downey led Carolina with 19.8 points per game, scoring a total of 614 points - the most by a Gamecock in a single season since 1980-81. Downey continued his strong effort on the defensive end as well, swiping 89 steals (2.9 per game). His 192 career steals rank fourth in Carolina history, while his 3.0 career steals per game average currently ranks atop the Gamecock record book. Downey scored double figures in 30 of South Carolina's 31 games in 2008-09, including 15 20-point and two 30-point efforts. He collected his 1,000th career point (including one-year total from Cincinnati) and also tallied his 1,000th point in the Garnet and Black during the season.

"Devan and I have been on the same page throughout the process," South Carolina head coach Darrin Horn said. "The feedback he received from several NBA teams and personnel will continue to help him grow as a basketball player. Devan is a special young man and player, and we are glad to have him back for his senior season."

"I want to thank my coaches, teammates and fans for being so supportive throughout the process," Downey said. "It was a great experience for me, but the best decision for me right now is to come back to school."

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