According to sources, Minnesota Gophers’ forward Trevor Mbakwe has been granted a 6th year of eligibility. Mbakwe suffered a torn ACL in November causing him to miss the rest of this season. He is expected to be ready to play next season and has had no setbacks in his rehab. He is currently traveling with the team on their run in the NIT tournament. Trevor will still need to decide however if he will return to college for the final year or decide to enter the NBA draft. If he enters his name into the draft to test the waters he will have until April 10th to withdraw his name. If he does not declare early he will have until April 29th to declare for the draft but would have less insight into how he would fare in the draft. You can expect that he will declare for the draft to test the waters and determine his draft stock but I expect him to withdraw from the draft before the April 10th deadline and return to College. Ralph Sampson III took that approach last season and returned to college after finding out he would not be drafted very high. I think Mbakwe’s current injury status could severely hurt his stock in the NBA draft and may help push him into returning for his final year with the Gophers. Also, all indications from his twitter account have been pointing toward a possible return. The fact that he is already 24 years old, the same age as Kevin Love, could be reason that he would finally want to go pro. If he does want to return to college, the University will need to sort out it’s scholarship situation because they have no scholarships available for him at this time. One thing I know for sure is the fans want him back!

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