Malachi Richardson declared for the NBA Draft Monday. He didn't hire an agent, so he still has until May 25 to decide whether he will go pro or return to Syracuse. Brittney Sykes didn't have that luxury.
Less than a day after losing the national championship to UConn, and just hours after returning to Syracuse from Indianapolis, Brittney Sykes got a call from Coach Quentin Hillsman, as reported by the Daily Orange's Connor Grossman.
Hillsman told Sykes she had 24 hours to decide if she would stay at Syracuse for a fifth year or enter the WNBA Draft.
Unlike the NBA Draft -- which is almost three months after the college basketball season ends -- the WNBA Draft took place on Thursday, just nine days after the national championship game. Skyes, after playing her first full season at Syracuse since her freshman year, had only a day to decide if she wanted another one. It took her less than an hour.
In that time, Sykes made three calls. One to Tammi Reiss, one to her mother, and a final one back to Coach Q. Reiss, an assistant coach with the Orange, played two years in the WNBA with the Utah Starzz (why aren't there names like that anymore?) before starting her coaching career. Reiss told Sykes another year would help her health after suffering ACL tears in back-to-back years. She would be able to learn what her body could and couldn't do.
Sykes's mother also thought another year would do her daughter good, but for the opportunity to get her master's degree, not only for working on her shot.
In the end, Sykes decided to return to Syracuse for a fifth and final season. In 2015-16, she averaged 10.3 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 1.6 assists. Next year she will go for her master's in instructional design, development and evaluation, and maybe another Final Four too.