Georgia Tech sophomore forward Kristian Sjolund may redshirt the season, coach Josh Pastner said Monday following the team’s win over Elon.
“We talked about the possibility of a redshirt, so I don’t want to burn a year playing a game if he’s still debating, ‘Do I want to redshirt or not?’ ” Pastner said.
On Monday, Sjolund was the only healthy eligible player on the roster who did not take the court in the Yellow Jackets’ 64-41 win over the Phoenix. He was conspicuous in not playing the previous Tuesday in the season-opening overtime win over N.C. State, particularly given that he finished his freshman season playing regular minutes.
Redshirting was an option last season, also, but Sjolund chose to play and ended up giving the Yellow Jackets help with his perimeter shooting, making 33 percent of his 3-point attempts. He started four games. In 21 games, or 198 minutes, he had 41 points, 21 rebounds, four assists and 14 turnovers.
Pastner believes that Sjolund (and the team) could benefit from him sitting out a year to develop and gain strength. Sjolund is 20, turning 21 next September.
“The more he matures physically and he continues to get better, he’s going to be really good,” Pastner said. “When he’s 22 or 23, I’m just telling you, he can be a guy that’s a dangerous weapon on the floor all over the place.”
Pastner said he expects Sjolund to make a decision by Tech’s next game — Nov. 20 at Georgia — or the game following, against Arkansas on Nov. 25. The decision will be Sjolund’s, Pastner said.
“I’m not going to force a young man to (redshirt),” he said. “If he doesn’t want to, then whatever he decides, makes that final decision, we’ll go from there.”
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