Utah center Jakob Poeltl will bypass NBA draft

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Utah center Jakob Poeltl will bypass the NBA draft and return for his sophomore year.

The 7-foot Austria native announced the decision Monday morning.

Poeltl started 34 games and averaged 9.1 points as the Utes advanced to the Sweet 16. He was named to the Pac-12 All-Freshman team after setting school freshman records with a 68.1 shooting percentage and 63 blocks. Some thought he would turn pro after playing well against Duke center Jahlil Okafor in the Sweet 16.

Poeltl applied to the NBA Undergraduate Advisory Committee and says, ''I think I can elevate my game a little more before facing the challenges of playing in the NBA.''

The decision is significant for the Utes now that star guard Delon Wright has exhausted his eligibility.

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