Turiaf To Play Senior Season For Zags
May 10, 2004
SPOKANE, Wash. - Ronny Turiaf will play his senior season as a Bulldog.
The Gonzaga University senior announced Monday he will return to play his senior season after months of speculation as to what the future might hold for the 2004-05 season.
"My time at Gonzaga has been an unbelievable experience. I started three years ago not knowing what to expect, and in that time I have learned that Gonzaga is a special place with special people," Turiaf said. "I am looking forward to finishing what I have started, both on and off the court. Having the opportunity to graduate next year and wear the Gonzaga uniform for one more season is an opportunity I cannot pass up. I look forward to playing in the NBA in the near future, but that opportunity will have to wait a little bit longer. Since the season has been over I have been working harder than ever on my game and expect to make a big jump this off season."
Gonzaga head coach Mark Few, who had an out-of-town commitment on Monday, was obviously pleased with Turiaf's decision.
"I am very proud of how Ronny handled this situation. He gathered a lot of information from various sources and made a very educated decision," Few said. "In the end, he stuck with the things that he values the most - his teammates, his education and the college experience at Gonzaga. He now has a great chance to be the Player of the Year in college basketball and a lottery pick in the 2005 NBA draft."
Turiaf, a 6-10, 243-pounder from Le Robert, Martinique, paced the Bulldogs in scoring at 15.5 ppg this past season in helping the squad to a 28-3 record, 14-0 West Coast Conference mark and a No. 3 ranking in the final Associated Press Top 25 poll. The Bulldogs advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the sixth straight year, advancing to the second round. He was named to the All-WCC first team, the United States Basketball Writers of America All-District 9 first team and to the National Association of Basketball Coaches District 14 first team. He was also one of 20 finalists for the Naismith College Basketball Player of the Year and was a John R. Wooden Award Midseason Top 30 nominee.
Turiaf also averaged 6.4 rpg and shot 52.5 percent from the field (157-for-229) in 2004. His 1,230 career points rank 14th in Gonzaga history, while his 120 blocked shots and 466 free throws rank second on the all-time lists.
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