Minnesota’s Amir Coffey to remain in draft

AP Photo/Kiichiro Sato
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Minnesota’s hopes of a second-straight NCAA tournament took a significant blow Wednesday.

Amir Coffey, the Gophers’ leading scorer and assist-man last season, will remain in the NBA draft and forgo is remaining collegiate eligibility, according to multiple reports.

The 6-foot-8 junior averaged 16.6 points, 3.6 rebounds and 3.2 assists last season while shooting 43.6 percent from the field and 30.4 percent from 3-point range. Coffey was a major recruit as a prep player before a knee injury cooled his prospects some. He’s dealt with injuries throughout his collegiate career as well.

NBA franchises will likely be intrigued by his playmaking coupled with his size, but he projects as a late second-round pick or going undrafted.

Coach Richard Pitino and the Gophers will now be tasked with replacing the focal point of the offense in Coffey along with departed seniors Jordan Murphy and Dupree McBrayer.