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Buckeyes' Thomas declares for NBA draft

The SportsXchange

Forward Deshaun Thomas will pass up his final season at Ohio State to enter the NBA draft, the university announced Friday.

Thomas leaves with 1,630 points, ranking him ninth on the Buckeyes' career scoring list. He led the Big Ten in scoring this season with a 19.8 average and helped Ohio State reach the West Regional final before losing to Wichita State.

"My three years at Ohio State have been the best years of my life," Thomas said. "I have grown tremendously as an individual and as a basketball player. I intend to return to finish my degree, but I believe that now is the best opportunity to pursue my dream and begin my career as a professional basketball player."

Thomas also played on a team that reached the Final Four in 2012. He considered following teammate Jared Sullinger to the NBA after last season before opting to stay in school.

"To see Deshaun grow into the man he has become has been amazing," Ohio State coach Thad Matta said. "His accomplishments on the floor speak for themselves, but I am just as proud of him and what he has done off the floor.

"We recruited him offering the opportunity to grow as a person and player, and that is exactly what happened. I know there is much more in store for him in the future and I am proud to have been able to coach him."
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