Junior Jordan Drops Basketball

"Loved playing for the Fighting Illini," guard says in statement

Thursday, Jun 25, 2009  |  Updated 11:17 AM CDT
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Junior Jordan Drops Basketball

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"I loved playing for the Fighting Illini and appreciate the support I was given by my teammates, coaches and the great fans here," Jeff Jordan said.

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Michael Jordan's son, Jeff, will not be playing basketball at Illinois next year.

The second-year player who walked on with the Illini said Wednesday he plans to focus on his studies.

"I loved playing for the Fighting Illini and appreciate the support I was given by my teammates, coaches and the great fans here," Jordan said in a statement. "But I have come to the point where I'm ready to focus on life after basketball."

Jordan earned a scholarship before the 2009 spring semester. In all, he appeared in 59 career games, totaling 58 points, 42 assists and 24 rebounds. A defensive specialist, Jordan averaged 8.4 minutes as a sophomore after playing 5.3 minutes per game as a true freshman.

Coach Bruce Weber said Jordan will be missed.

"He brought great work ethic to the gym and pushed himself, as well as his teammates, each and every day to improve. We will miss him, but we fully support the decision he has made.

Jordan starred in high school at Loyola Academy in Wilmette, a Chicago suburb, but wasn't heavily recruited. He chose to walk on at Illinois rather than accept a scholarship from Valparaiso.

A 6-foot, 1 inch tall, 185-pound guard, Jordan had been considered a candidate for more playing time and even a leadership role on the team next season.

Weber compared him favorably to now-departed guard Chester Frazier, who played through his four seasons at Illinois with near-constant injuries and was considered one of the Big Ten's best defenders.

Michael Jordan's youngest son, Marcus, in April committed to playing at Central Florida next season.

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