LOS ANGELES (AP) -Southern California's Nick Young decided to pass up his senior season and enter the NBA draft because of what it means to his family.
``I want to buy my mom her first house. That's one of the main reasons I made this decision,'' Young said Tuesday at a news conference on campus. ``It was tough for us. They've been behind me all the way.
``The opportunity was there to help them have a better life. It's a blessing. I'm very grateful for everything that's going on.''
Young, the sixth-leading scorer in USC history, said he will hire an agent, making his decision irrevocable. His parents, Charles and Mae Young, attended the news conference.
``I think he did the right thing, it's the right thing to come out now,'' Young's father said.
``Wherever he plays, they'd better get ready because here I come,'' Mrs. Young said. ``I've got a lot to shout about.''
The 21-year-old junior said he spoke with several people, including USC coach Tim Floyd and his assistants; his high school coach, his parents, his brother and his Trojans teammates.
``Nick has played well enough to receive consideration from the NBA,'' Floyd said in a statement. ``He has our support and we wish him the best.''
Floyd was on a recruiting trip and didn't attend the news conference.
Young averaged 17.5 points and 4.6 rebounds this season, scoring in double figures in USC's last 25 games.
He led the Trojans into the NCAA tournament for the first time in five years and scored 20 points in a 77-60 first-round victory over Arkansas; 22 in an 87-68 second-round triumph over Texas, and 15 in a 74-64 third-round loss to North Carolina.
``What we did last year was very outstanding. I had dreams of doing it next year,'' Young said. ``It was a tough decision. It was a tough thing, leaving this program. I just love this program.''
The 6-foot-6, 200-pounder scored 1,486 points in 96 games at USC. He averaged 11.1 points and 4.1 rebounds as a freshman and 17.3 points and 6.6 rebounds as a sophomore, and was chosen to the All Pac-10 first-team the past two years.
Young said he informed Floyd of his decision in a tearful conversation Sunday.
``Coach Floyd didn't want me to leave, but he said, `First round, I'd do the same thing.' It was hard telling him,'' Young said. ``He's an NBA coach - he did everything possible to help me on defense, make me a better man.''
Floyd coached the Chicago Bulls and New Orleans Hornets before coming to USC.
Young said he's been told he'll be a first-round pick.
``I've heard anywhere from 12 to 25,'' he said. ``The opportunity is there for me.''
Young played forward and guard at USC. As to his future, he said: ``Everybody's saying a 2-guard. I've got to get ready to guard Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady.''
Young said he plans to return to school and graduate.
``Oh, yeah, most definitely. I want to come back and get my degree,'' he said.
Gabe Pruitt, a junior who averaged 12.4 points and 4.2 assists for the Trojans last season, said he's thinking about declaring for the draft, and might not make a decision until the April 29 deadline.
``Even if I did, I wouldn't hire an agent,'' he said. ``It's a big decision, I want to make the right one.''
If Pruitt declares without hiring an agent, he could return for his senior year if he withdraws from the draft by June 18.
Advertisement

NCAAB Headlines

NCAAB Top Stories

Thumbnail Kansas vs. Iowa State Prediction Iowa State is a home underdog tonight against Kansas in Big 12 play. Are the Cyclones a good bet to cover when the teams tip-off at 9:00PM ET?
Thumbnail Syracuse vs. UNC Pick No. 11 North Carolina is a big favorite at home today when it welcomes Syracuse to town when they meet at 7PM ET.
Thumbnail Creighton vs. Xavier Pick It’s a huge Big East matchup today at 2PM ET when No. 15 Xavier hosts No. 8 Creighton. Which team has the edge?
Thumbnail USC vs. Colorado Prediction Colorado is a small home favorite tonight against USC in Pac-12 play. Are the Buffs worth a play for bettors?
Thumbnail Bearcats in business as Pirates await On Thursday, No. 22 Cincinnati eked out a 66-64 win over SMU. But will Mick Cronin’s crew have an easier time dispatching another American Athletic Conference rival...

NCAAB Team Pages