Mike White may be losing his best player from last year’s team, but that player has at least left the door open to return.
Florida forward Devin Robinson has entered his name into the NBA Draft. However, he has not hired an agent, which is considered the point of no return in a player’s college to professional athletic status in the eyes of the NCAA. This means that Robinson can, in theory, change his mind and return to UF for his senior season.
And that theory looks like a plausible one. Robinson did the exact same thing last year, but pulled his name from the Draft and came back for his junior year, so there’s a precedent. He’s also not projected to be a particularly high pick, and it’s usually the opportunity to be a lottery pick if not a late first round pick that entices most underclassmen to go. Most mock drafts I’ve seen have him going in the middle or end of the second round if at all, and that’s a clear indication that he should return- my own personal fandom of the Gators aside.
Robinson also stated that the Gators’ loss to South Carolina in the Elite Eight could be a motivating factor for him to return. Florida has a chance to compete for a national championship next year, with Kevaughn Allen, John Egbunu, Kevarrius Hayes, Chris Chiozza and Keith Stone all returning, plus the addition of Isaiah Stokes to bolster an already stocked lineup. So that’s not just a player speaking out of sadness and blind wishing; Robinson knows that the Gators could be special next year, and has admitted that the possibility is enticing.
So it really feels like Robinson should return next season, to sharpen his skills and go from a high upside project to a can’t miss lottery pick- a jump that I believe Robinson is capable of making. But whatever he ultimately decides to do, I of course wish him the best.