Former UNC Basketball Star Caleb Love Announces Return to College.

Six and a half hours before the deadline on Wednesday night, Caleb Love, a former three-year starter for UNC’s basketball team and a key player in the 2022 Final Four, announced on social media that he has withdrawn from the NBA Draft. Instead, he will return to Arizona, where he thrived last season after transferring from Chapel Hill.

Addressing his Arizona fans in his announcement video, Love said, “Wildcat nation, it’s been amazing the way you’ve welcomed me and showered me with love. No way I could walk away from all of that right now. The show goes on.”

Love’s ability to spend another year in college is due to the NCAA’s decision not to count the shortened 2020-21 season, his freshman year at UNC, against any athlete’s eligibility.

According to CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein, the 22-year-old is one of five 2023-24 AP All-Americans returning for the 2024-25 season, alongside Alabama’s Mark Sears, Auburn’s Johni Broome, Kansas’ Hunter Dickinson, and Love’s former UNC teammate, reigning ACC Player of the Year RJ Davis.

Davis and Love, who was the final Pac-12 Player of the Year as the Wildcats prepare for their Big 12 debut next season, are the only returning high-major players with conference Player of the Year honors.

While UNC and Arizona are not scheduled to play each other in the regular season, a matchup in the NCAA Tournament is possible, as both teams are expected to start the season comfortably within the top 25.