Fowles says she will return to LSU next season

Updated: March 31, 2007, 7:01 PM ET
By Mechelle Voepel | Special to ESPN.com

CLEVELAND -- LSU junior center Sylvia Fowles said Saturday there is no chance she'll skip her last season in order to enter Wednesday's WNBA draft.

Fowles
Fowles
"No, I'm not going early," Fowles said in LSU's locker room during the Final Four's media day. "I'm staying my senior year and am going to work on my master's [degree]."

If a player turns 22 in the same calendar year as the draft, she can become eligible for it even if she hasn't used up her college eligibility. Fowles will be 22 on Oct. 6.

But along with working on academics, she said there are elements of her game she wants to improve while still in college.

Fowles found flaws even in her 23-point, 15-rebound, six-block performance in the Fresno Regional final against Connecticut.

"I don't think that was my very best, because I did have some breakdowns that others didn't see," Fowles said. "I thought I could have been much better. Not saying I wasn't good in that game."

Tennessee's redshirt sophomore Candace Parker, who is also playing in the Final Four, has previously said she will not enter the draft this year, either. She reiterated that Saturday. Parker would be eligible because she's scheduled to get her degree from Tennessee in December, the same calendar year as this draft.

Mechelle Voepel of The Kansas City Star is a regular contributor to ESPN.com. She can be reached at mvoepel123@yahoo.com. Graham Hays contributed to this report.

Mechelle Voepel joined ESPN.com in 1996 and covers women's college hoops, the WNBA, the LPGA, and additional collegiate sports for espnW.

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