Two days before the start of Oregon’s 2016 NCAA Tournament, the Ducks got great news for the 2017 season.
Forward Chris Boucher has received a waiver to play college basketball in the 2016-17 season. He had joined Oregon this offseason after two years at junior colleges. However, due to a delayed enrollment issue out of high school, Boucher was declared a senior by the NCAA.
According to the school, Boucher appealed the governing body’s decision, stating that he worked for a year after high school in order to support his family. The NCAA ruled that the “delay owed to circumstances beyond his control,” and granted his request for an extra year of eligibility.
Boucher, already 23, has been a massive addition to the Ducks this season, averaging 12.1 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.1 blocks per game. The 6-foot-10 Canadian also became the first player in the history of the Pac-12 to block 100 shots and hit 30 3-pointers in a season, showing his versatility as a player.
“Chris is a tremendous young man, and we’re very excited to have him back with us for another year,” coach Dana Altman said. “He has done everything we’ve asked of him, has been great to work with and I’m glad he will have the opportunity to continue to develop as a player as well as finish his degree.”
His ability to not only protect the rim but also knock down shots from the outside has made him something of an interesting NBA prospect as well. After all, players with his skill set are quite rare, as evidenced by him setting a record in his first season of play. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Boucher declare for the draft this season in order to test his stock, but it certainly is nice that he’ll get a chance to return to Oregon if he doesn’t like what he finds out.