Verge to stay at Arizona State, removes name from NBA draft

JOHN MARSHALL (AP Basketball Writer)
The Associated Press
FILE - In this March 7, 2020, file photo, Arizona State guard Alonzo Verge Jr. looks to pass the ball during the team's NCAA college basketball game against Washington State in Tempe, Ariz. Arizona State guard Alonzo Verge Jr. is withdrawing his name from the NBA draft and will return for his senior season. A crafty scorer, Verge had a dynamic first season in Tempe after transferring from Moberly Area Community College in Missouri. (AP Photo/Matt York, File)
FILE - In this March 7, 2020, file photo, Arizona State guard Alonzo Verge Jr. looks to pass the ball during the team's NCAA college basketball game against Washington State in Tempe, Ariz. Arizona State guard Alonzo Verge Jr. is withdrawing his name from the NBA draft and will return for his senior season. A crafty scorer, Verge had a dynamic first season in Tempe after transferring from Moberly Area Community College in Missouri. (AP Photo/Matt York, File)

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) -- Arizona State guard Alonzo Verge Jr. is withdrawing his name from the NBA draft and will return for his senior season.

''We are thrilled with Alonzo's decision,'' Sun Devils coach Bobby Hurley said in a statement Saturday. ''He is committed to winning and competing for championships. Zo is well positioned to have an outstanding senior season, which will strengthen his future professional opportunities.''

Verge joined guard Remy Martin and big man Romello White in declaring for the draft in April.

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Martin has yet to decide if he will return for his senior season. White has entered his name in the transfer portal, likely ending his time in the desert. The deadline for pulling out of the draft is Aug. 3.

The return of Verge should give the Sun Devils a huge boost after Hurley brought in one of the program's best recruiting classes, highlighted by five-star guard Joshua Christopher.

A crafty scorer, Verge had a dynamic first season in Tempe after transferring from Moberly Area Community College in Missouri.

The Chicago native was named the Pac-12 sixth man of the year after averaging 14.6 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists. His average of 16.8 points in 19 games off the bench led the nation.

Verge scored 43 points against Saint Mary's in December, fourth most in school history, and averaged 20.6 points during Arizona State's first seven-game conference winning streak since 1980-81.

Arizona State was in good position to make the NCAA Tournament in three straight seasons for the first time since four consecutive years from 1960-64 before the pandemic wiped out March Madness.

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