The Virginia basketball team finished 15-5 in the ACC Conference last season, but lost to Duke in the league's title game. One of the team's primary players is Reece Beekman.
Beekman, a 6-foot-3, 190-pound guard from Milwaukee, averaged 9.5 points, 5.3 assists and 1.8 steals. His dynamic all-around play helped fuel Virginia toward one of its best ACC campaigns in years.
On Wednesday, Beekman announced he will withdraw his name from the NBA Draft and return to school. Beekman participated in the NBA Draft combine on May 15.
“I've decided to go back to UVA to work towards being a first-round draft pick next year and finish my degree,” Beekman said to ESPN.
Fans seemed caught off guard by the Virginia basketball star's decision.
“Woah thought he was a second round lock,” one fan said.
Beekman's impact last season went far beyond the stat sheet. He was named ACC Defensive Player of the Year and Third-Team All-ACC. The news is welcome considering Virginia lost four of its top five scorers from last year's team.
Virginia basketball will return a talented supporting cast. Guard Ryan Dunn played 13 minutes per game last season and is a projected first round pick. Fellow guard Isaac McKneely averaged 6.7 points in over 21 minutes. Transfers Jordan Minor (Merrimack), Andrew Rohde (St. Thomas), and Jacob Graves (Oklahoma) will add to the team's depth and talent pool.
The Virginia basketball team's 2023 recruiting class is ranked in the top 30 by 247Sports.com. Four-star additions include Blake Buchanan, a 6-foot-9 center, and Elijah Gertrude, a 6-foot-3 guard.
Six-foot-10, 230 pound freshman center also Anthony Robinson has the skills to become an early contributor for Tony Bennett's team.