Florida PG Tre Mann withdraws from 2020 NBA Draft, returns to Gators for sophomore season

By Adam Silverstein
July 7, 2020
Florida PG Tre Mann withdraws from 2020 NBA Draft, returns to Gators for sophomore season
Basketball

Image Credit: UAA

Over two months after initially declaring for the 2020 NBA Draft, point guard Tre Mann has decided to return the Florida Gators for his sophomore season. Mann has withdrawn from the draft with his sights set on a second year at Florida under head coach Mike White, he announced Tuesday.

“I want to thank my family, our coaching staff and my teammates for their support throughout this process,” Mann said in a statement released by UF. “I’m excited to come back to UF to continue growing as a player and a person and to play in front of our Florida fans and the Rowdy Reptiles again!”

On the same day Andrew Nembhard withdrew from the 2020 NBA Draft and made public his decision to transfer from the Gators in May, Mann was forced to dispute a report that had the rising sophomore set to remove his name from draft consideration and return to Florida for the 2020-21 season.

Mann clarified that he had not made a decision at that time, but with another month to consider his options, his return to the Gators is indeed in the cards.

Mann declared for the draft on the same day as Nembhard did in April. His decision to do so was deemed strange considering he averaged 5.3 points in 17.8 minutes per game during his freshman season. Though he was a five-star prospect and the No. 21 overall recruit coming out of high school, Mann did not do enough to warrant draft consideration, and he was not among the top prospects on most projected draft boards.

The Gators’ point guard situation for the 2020-21 season has clarified with his return. Mann will certainly be the front-runner to start for Florida with Nembhard departing, though he is more of a combo guard who also likes to play off the ball.

He will compete for a starting job with Cleveland State transfer Tyree Appleby, who is more of a natural ball handler. Appleby, a dynamic player who will become eligible this season, joined the team ahead of last season. Rising sophomore Ques Glover will be the third point guard on the team but should see plenty of action as UF did not sign a point guard in the Class of 2020.

Nembhard decided to remove his name from the draft on May 30 but also decided to transfer out of the Florida basketball program. Nembhard, who would have been entering his junior season at UF, eventually chose Gonzaga as his destination. He will have two years of eligibility remaining but must sit out a year in residence per NCAA rules unless he receives a waiver exemption.

With the NBA Draft continuously delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic wreaking havoc on the 2019-20 NBA season, it was not the best time for borderline-draftable players to test the system and hope for an invitation to the combine.

It was expected that Nembhard and Mann would pull out of the draft, though it was not known that Nembhard would transfer away from the Gators. White’s uptempo offense had been slowed with Nembhard at the helm, and the player’s decision to move on may end up being a net positive for Florida next season despite the loss of his immense talent.

The decision by Mann comes on the heels of forward Keyontae Johnson and guard Scottie Lewis deciding to return for the 2020-21 season. Johnson was Florida’s best and most consistent player last season, while Lewis likely has the highest NBA upside long-term.

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