When the Iowa State Cyclones were bounced from the NCAA Tournament in just the second round, rumors began circulating regarding the status of star forward Georges Niang. The 6-foot-8 junior was excellent during the 2015 campaign averaging 15.3 points, 5.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game wowing onlookers by his multifaceted game. Still, Niang felt he had some unfinished business with the Cyclones and has decided to return to the school for his final season.
“I was weighing it, but I want to be loyal to the program and didn’t want to go out this way,” Niang told ESPN.com. “I didn’t want to leave my mark like that.”
“I think we have a really good core coming back,” Niang said.
Niang, a third team All American selection, immediately catapults Iowa State in the discussion for preseason top 10 honors and hopes to return the Cyclones back to the final four. On top of Niang’s return, Iowa State adds transfers Hallice Cooke and Deonte Burton making them a dangerous opponent for any team across the country.
The decision could further solidify Niang’s NBA future as the extra season will provide him an opportunity to continue his development along the low post and boards.
Niang was more than likely on the outside looking regarding his draft stock and another All-American caliber season could skyrocket him into the first round.
Before they can get ahead themselves, however, the Cyclones, must have a productive off-season as they prepare for one of the program’s best chances to capture a National Championship.
*Section Photo credit to Denny Medley, USA TODAY Sports; Featured Photo (above) credit to Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports.