March 29, 2010
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- University of Michigan men's basketball junior guard Manny Harris (Detroit, Mich./Redford HS) announced today (Monday, March 29) that he will leave college early and enter his name into the 2010 NBA Draft.
"After long discussions with the U-M staff and my family and friends, I have decided to pursue my dream of professional basketball and leave U-M early for the NBA," said Harris. "It is important for me to thank the University of Michigan, Coach Beilein and his staff, my teammates, my professors, as well as all those in the athletic department who have helped me over the last three years. My growth as a person and player wouldn't have been possible without them.
"I will always appreciate the college game and what it has done for me, but playing professional basketball has always been a goal and I feel it is the best time to pursue that. I will always be a Michigan Wolverine at heart and bleed Maize and Blue forever."
"Manny believes it is his time to move on to the NBA and we fully support him," said U-M head coach John Beilein. "It was a tough decision for him and we are prepared to assist him in every way we can as he begins this new chapter in his life. Manny has assured us he plans on successfully finishing this semester, which would put him in a position to graduate from Michigan with just one more academic year.
"In three short years, Manny has compiled outstanding career numbers in points, rebounds, assists and steals -- milestones many very good players do not reach during a four-year career. I have many fond memories of Manny's time at Michigan. He has been clutch in so many big wins. We certainly will miss him; however, we wish him nothing but the best in his professional basketball career and beyond."
Harris started 97 of 98 games during his three seasons at Michigan, averaging 17.0 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.5 steals per game. He finished with 11 career double-doubles and became just the second Wolverine in history to record a triple-double when he tallied 18 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists against Northern Michigan on Nov. 14, 2009. Throughout his career, he tallied 83 double-figure scoring games, with 37 of those of 20-plus points.
This past season, Harris averaged a career-best 18.1 points per game and scored in double figures in 29 of 31 games played, including 16 games with 20-plus points. He became just the fifth Wolverine in history to record three consecutive 500-plus point seasons. As a sophomore, Harris helped Michigan to a 21-14 record, which tied a school record for the largest single-season turnaround in program history, helping U-M earn its first NCAA Tournament bid in 11 years.
A three-time All-Big Ten Conference selection and two-time U-M Most Valuable Player, Harris scored 1,668 points in his three-year career, putting him 10th in school history and making him one of just three juniors to reach the 1,600-point plateau, joining Mike McGee (1978-81) and Jalen Rose (1992-94). Harris ranks 32nd with 549 career rebounds and is among the top 10 all-time for free throws made (484, 3rd), free throw percentage (.827, 3rd), three-point field goal attempts (447, 5th), three-point field goals made (142, 6th), free throw attempts (585, 6th), steals (144, 7th) and assists (366, 9th).
The NBA Draft comprises two rounds and 60 total selections and will be held Thursday, June 24, at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Contact: Tom Wywrot (734) 763-4423