Mark Sears withdraws from 2024 NBA Draft and returns to Alabama after Final Four Run

Alabama star Mark Sears is withdrawing from the 2024 NBA draft pool and returning to the Crimson Tide.

“I’ve gotten good feedback from the NBA,” he told ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. “But I can still improve in a few areas. I want to show next season that I can be a dog on defense, continue to bring vocal leadership and work on my body and get in better shape. NIL has changed basketball and NBA teams told For me, that age doesn’t factor into today’s game, so I felt comfortable coming back to try to bring home a national championship to Alabama.”

Sears averaged 21.5 points, 4.2 rebounds and 4.0 assists in his second year at Alabama, helping the program reach its first-ever Final Four. During the Tide’s NCAA Tournament, he scored 24.2 points per game and shot 45.5 percent from beyond the arc.

Despite putting up nice numbers in 2023-2024, the veteran guard doesn’t appear to be a sure thing draft-wise. Bleacher Report’s Jonathan Wasserman left out Sears in his latest mock draft.

Height is an obvious consideration for the 6-foot-4 playmaker, and despite what he said to Givony, his age is likely working against him as well.

The advent of the NIL era has made it much easier for players in Sears’ position to stay in college instead of heading into the unknown with the pros. During the upcoming campaign, he can continue to refine his game and possibly win over more NBA talent evaluators while cashing in some endorsement checks.

Keeping Sears in the backcourt will boost Alabama’s bid to return to the Final Four and achieve even more in 2024-2025. The Crimson Tide already retained forward Grant Nelson, who was their leading rebounder (5.9 boards) while averaging 11.9 points.

Head coach Nate Oats also compiled the No. 2 class in the 247Sports 2024 composite team rankings. Small forward Derrion Reid and power forward Aiden Sherrell are both five-star recruits in high school.

Alabama will undoubtedly have the talent to make another deep run in the Big Dance.

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