Kentucky Wildcats sophomore point guard Ashton Hagans announced Sunday that he has declared for the 2020 NBA Draft and will not maintain his eligibility for a potential return to Lexington.

In his statement, Hagans delivered a message to the Big Blue Nation that read “I just wanted to let you all know that even though I love Kentucky with all of my heart and really wish I could have played for a ‘ship, it’s time for me to live out my life-long dream and declare for the NBA Draft. It’s been my No. 1 goal since I first picked up a ball to take this step and I know my time is now. It’s so hard for me to say goodbye to the best fans in the world, because these last two years have been some of the best of my life.

He also took time to thank the UK coaching staff that read “I want to give some shout outs to Coach Cal, KP (Kenny Payne), Barb (Tony Barbee), Joel (Justus), Robes (John Robic) and all of the staff. You helped me grow into a man and I know you’ll be there supporting me forever.”

Hagans served as the Wildcats starting point guard for two seasons. As a sophomore, he averaged 11.5 points, 6.4 assists, 3.9 rebounds and 1.9 steals per game and earned a spot on the SEC First-Team All-Defensive Team.

“Ashton is ready for this,” UK head coach John Calipari said of Hagans decision. “From where he was when he got here two seasons ago to where he is now isn’t even close. He’s a completely different player and he’s built his skills and his confidence to take that next step.

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