RALEIGH — N.C. State forward C.J. Leslie said Tuesday that he is eager to get to know new coach Mark Gottfried but has not yet decided whether to return to school for his sophomore season.
"I'd like to sit down, meet with Coach, get to know his ins and outs and what he's about," Leslie said after attending Gottfried's introductory news conference. "So that's what I'm going to do."
Leslie ranked second on the Wolfpack in scoring (11.0 ppg) and led the team in rebounding (7.2 rpg) last season. Leslie is considered to possess NBA-caliber athletic ability, even though his production did not always match his potential last season.
Underclassmen have until April 24 to declare for the NBA Draft.
Other players, too, were eager to get to know Gottfried better so they can evaluate their futures.
Sophomore point guard Ryan Harrow said that right now he plans to stay at N.C. State but added, "I just have to weigh my options and see what's best for me in the long run. I came to play for Coach [Sidney] Lowe, but I came to play for the school, too. I think this school is a great school. I will just have to get to know the coach, and who he's bringing in, and what he has in store for me."
Fellow sophomore guard Lorenzo Brown said he had grown tired of all the talk and speculation surrounding N.C. State's search for a new coach.
"We were all kind of confused, hearing all the names, just a lot of talk," Brown said. "I know of [Gottfried] from Alabama, and I know he's a good coach and he wants to win, and that's what we all want to do. I know he's a good guy and he wants to win. I like to win myself. I hate losing."
Junior wing Scott Wood said he was impressed with what he heard from Gottfried in a 10-minute meeting but said he wants to talk with Gottfried and make sure he is a good fit as he considers an important "lifetime decision."
Staff writers Robbi Pickeral and Chip Alexander contributed to this report.
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