Originally created 04/15/04

Hodge staying for senior season at N.C. State



RALEIGH, N.C. -- Julius Hodge announced Wednesday that he will stay at North Carolina State for his senior year, choosing not to enter the NBA draft.

Hodge, the reigning Atlantic Coast Conference player of the year and second-team All-American, led the Wolfpack to a second-place regular-season finish in the ACC and a third straight trip to the NCAA tournament.

The 6-foot-7 swingman cited his desire to win a conference championship and fulfill a promise to his mother to earn a degree as reasons for staying.

Hodge also said his decision to stay at N.C. State wasn't influenced by analysts' projections of his pro potential.

"One more year of ACC basketball isn't going to hurt," he said. "I was pretty confident if I left this year I would be in a pretty good position."

Hodge led the ACC in field-goal percentage (51.3) and was second in scoring (18.6) this season.