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Rodriguez changes his mind, will return to Bucs

By Joe Avento • May 7, 2019 at 9:15 PM

JOHNSON CITY — Steve Forbes’ best recruit turned out to be one he already had.

The East Tennessee State men’s basketball coach was all smiles on Tuesday when he announced that Jeromy Rodriguez has changed his mind about turning pro and will be back with the Bucs next season, his final year of eligibility.

“When Jeromy told me last night that he wanted to return to ETSU for his senior season, he made me the happiest coach in all of college basketball,” Forbes said. “I have always wanted what was best for Jeromy and his family. Jeromy and I have a very close and personal relationship.”

Rodriguez, an All-Southern Conference performer last season, averaged 11.2 points and 10.9 rebounds in 33 games for the Bucs. He was eighth nationally in rebounding.

Rodriguez graduated from ETSU on Saturday with a degree in sports management.

“Over the past couple of weeks I began to have second thoughts about turning professional,” he said. “After going back and forth in my mind, I decided to visit with Coach Forbes last week about the possibility of me returning to the team. He encouraged me to think about it over the weekend and visit with him after I had spoken to my family. My family and I decided it would be best for me to return to ETSU. I want to thank my coaches, my teammates and our fans for their support and I’m ready to get back to work.”

Forbes has his top six scorers and three all-conference players on next year’s roster.

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