Goodwin leaving Kentucky, Cauley-Stein and Wiltjer will return
Lexington, KY (Sports Network) - University of Kentucky freshman Archie Goodwin has decided to leave the program to enter the NBA Draft, while Willie Cauley-Stein and Kyle Wiltjer will return next season.
Goodwin was the leading scorer for the Wildcats this past season, averaging 14.0 points. His total of 448 points scored ranks 10th among freshmen in UK history.
"Although I really wanted Archie to return for his sophomore season, I fully support him choosing to pursue his dreams," said Kentucky coach John Calipari on Monday. "He has the drive and desire to be great and I will continue to do everything I can to make sure he succeeds in life both on and off the court."
The 6-foot-4 guard has not yet signed with an agent.
"This is something I've dreamed about my entire life and I feel like the opportunity is there for me to play at the next level," said Goodwin. "I will stay in Lexington to finish my schoolwork this semester before continuing to pursue my dream. I've loved my time at UK and want to thank Coach Cal, the staff and my teammates for helping me get where I am. I especially want to thank the Big Blue Nation for all their support."
Cauley-Stein, like Goodwin, earned All-SEC freshman honors this past season. The 7-foot forward averaged 8.3 points and 6.3 rebounds during the 2012-13 season.
"I'm looking forward to continuing to develop as an all-around player," said Cauley-Stein. "I'm also excited for the opportunity to try and win a national championship."
This year's Kentucky squad did not reach the NCAA Tournament after winning the national championship last spring. The Wildcats lost all five starters from that team, as freshmen Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marquis Teague and sophomores Doron Lamb and Terrence Jones all left for the NBA last April.
Wiltjer was a member of the 2012 championship team, averaging 5.0 points in 40 games. The 6-foot-10 forward was the SEC's top sixth man this past season when he averaged 10.4 points and 4.3 rebounds.
"I'm so excited about the possibilities of next season," said Wiltjer. "I love Coach Cal and the staff, the University of Kentucky and the Big Blue Nation. After talking with coach and the staff, I understand what I need to do. I want to be a part of another championship. This summer I'm going to work the hardest I've ever worked to come back next season better and stronger to help my team fight for number nine."
This year's Kentucky team finished 21-12 and was knocked out in the first round of the NIT by Robert Morris.
04/01 12:32:37 ET