- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 9, 2015

Forward Jake Layman has decided to forego the NBA draft and return to Maryland for his senior season, the school announced Thursday.

Layman averaged 12.5 points and 5.8 rebounds per game as a junior last season, leading the team with four double-doubles. Some believed he was the most NBA-ready player on the Terrapins’ roster.

At the conclusion of the season, he spent time weighing his professional options with coach Mark Turgeon and his parents, Tim and Claire Layman. In the end, the 6-foot-9 forward believed it would be best for him to return to school.

“I would like to thank Coach Turgeon for his guidance during this process,” Layman said in a statement. “Maryland is my home and we had great success this year. There is so much to look forward to next season and I’m excited to be a part of it.”

Layman’s return answers the final question mark in what should be a stacked starting lineup for the Terrapins entering next season. Electric point guard Melo Trimble also considered entering the NBA draft but decided to return. Five-star center Diamond Stone orally committed to the Terrapins, becoming their highest-ranked prospect in more than a decade. And forward Robert Carter, who sat out last season because of the NCAA’s transfer regulations, will be eligible to play in 2015-16.

Add rising sophomores Michal Cekovsky, Jared Nickens and Dion Wiley to the mix, and Maryland could begin the season as a Top-10 team in national polls.

The possibility of a deep NCAA tournament run, as well as a chance to complete his degree in American studies, likely fueled Layman’s decision to return.

“We’re excited that Jake is returning to Maryland for his senior year, not only to continue to play basketball but also to pursue his degree,” Tim and Claire Layman said in a statement. “We simply took the time to go through the process to examine all the options available for Jake. We’re thrilled that he is going to have the opportunity to help the Terps achieve all their goals in what promises to be a very exciting year.”

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