HomeSportsCaleb Love withdraws from NBA draft and returns to Arizona; top...

Caleb Love withdraws from NBA draft and returns to Arizona; top recruit Joson Sanon is transferring to rival ASU

Caleb Love leads it back.

The rising fifth-year senior announced Wednesday that he is withdrawing from the NBA draft and returning to Arizona for his final season of eligibility. The news led to a cancellation of Top 25 wing Joson Sanon, who promptly switched his commitment to rival Arizona State.

“Wildcat nation. It was so amazing how you welcomed me and showered me with love,” Love said in a video announcement highlighting a highlight from his lone season in Arizona. “I couldn’t walk away from that right now.”

Love made his announcement at Wednesday’s deadline to withdraw from the draft. Love was a 6-4 scoring guard with a career field goal percentage of 37.5% and was not projected to be a first-round pick. Instead, he returns to a Wildcats team that could start the season as a top-10 team.

Love came to Arizona last season after sharing the backcourt in North Carolina with RJ Davis for three years. As the clear No. 1 guard in Arizona, Love averaged 18 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.2 steals while shooting 41.3% from the field and 33.2% from 3.

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His scoring, rebounding, steals and field goals were all career highs. He was named Pac-12 Player of the Year and earned third-team AP All-America honors. His return boosts Arizona’s hopes of competing for a national championship.

It comes at a long-term cost to Arizona. According to Rivals, Sanon is the 25th ranked player and the No. 8 small forward in his class. As a leading scorer, his skills would have been redundant at Love’s in Arizona.

He now plans to face the Wildcats twice a year instead of playing for them. Sanon announced his renewed commitment on social media on Wednesday afternoon with the caption ‘add STATE’.

Arizona and Arizona State will face each other as Big 12 rivals starting next season following the dissolution of the Pac-12.

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