Florida center John Egbunu will return for his redshirt senior season, per multiple sources and reports.
Egbunu suffered a season ending ACL tear in the Gators’ rout of Auburn last year, and so speaking objectively from afar, this felt like a no-brainer: rarely do teams take a chance on a player with such a severe injury, and only when the player was a consensus lottery pick prior to the injury. To boot, he’s talented, but he would have been better served by coming back for his final year of eligibility even if he hadn’t torn his ACL, so with that added into the equation the decision was an easy one.
But Egbunu isn’t out of the woods yet. ACL tears typically take 9-12 months to fully heal, and Egbunu’s tear occurred last February. That means the absolute earliest Egbunu would be ready for full contact basketball is the middle of November, and that’s only if he exceeds expectations with his recovery and doesn’t suffer any setbacks. Which is also why it was smart to return for his senior season.
Whenever he does return, the Gators will surely benefit from his presence. Egbunu grabbed 6.6 rebounds a game in his abbreviated junior season, and chipped in 7.8 points per game. He and Kevarrius Hayes should make a nice tandem down low after the experience Hayes got last year, and his return should only solidify Florida’s ability to dream of a championship next season.