Guard Matthew Murrell returning to Ole Miss for senior season

Matthew Murrell rocks the rim with powerful slam (0:18)

Matthew Murrell rocks the rim with powerful slam (0:18)

Ole Miss guard Matthew Murrell is withdrawing from the NBA draft and returning to school for his senior season, he told ESPN.

"After gathering feedback from my workouts and team personnel, I am going to continue to build my game at Ole Miss, so I am in the position I want to be in for the 2024 NBA draft," Murrell said. "I know who I am as a player and how that can translate to the NBA."

Murrell will enter next season as a likely preseason All-SEC player and potential second-round draft pick after leading Ole Miss in scoring this past season, at 14.4 points per game.

Murrell is one of the most physically gifted players returning to college basketball, with a chiseled frame, long arms, and flashes of impressive transition scoring and defensive versatility. He posted a 41½-inch vertical at the G League Elite Camp in Chicago earlier this month, the third-best mark in this draft class.

After struggling to make his mark in scrimmages, he wowed NBA executives at a pro day conducted in Chicago where he showed off his explosive leaping ability and diverse shot-making prowess, something teams will want to see him build on after seeing his 3-point percentage drop from 39% as a sophomore to 30% as a junior.

Murrell says that's just one of several things he's hoping to accomplish as a senior.

"I have multiple goals, starting with winning a national championship at Ole Miss," he said. "I am also going to show teams that I am one of best two-way players in the country, improving both my defense and becoming a more consistent shooter."

It has been a busy offseason in Oxford for the Rebels, who made a coaching change in hiring Chris Beard following his dismissal from Texas because of domestic violence charges, which were ultimately dropped. Beard has now been able to retain the team's top two scorers from last season in Murrell and rising senior Jaemyn Brakefield while adding a slew of talent from the transfer portal, including wing Brandon Murray (Georgetown), centers Moussa Cisse and Jamarion Sharp (Western Kentucky) and point guard Austin Nunez (Arizona State).

Jonathan Givony is an NBA draft expert and the founder and co-owner of DraftExpress.com, a private scouting and analytics service utilized by NBA, NCAA and international teams.