Basketball

Jai Lucas Transfers to Texas

Former Florida guard Jai Lucas, who started all 36 games last season for the Gators, announced Sunday night that he’s transferring to Texas.

This season the Texas Longhorns have struggled to find consistency at the point guard position, but on Sunday they may have found their starter for next year.

Sophomore guard Jai Lucas, who left Florida last month, announced Sunday that he’s going to be a Longhorn.

“Texas has always been my dream school. I always wanted to go there,” the Bellaire, Tex. native told KRIV-TV in Houston. “I hope I can come in and contribute and be a part of something big.”

He’d also been considering Rice and Baylor, but Lucas attributed the decision to the teaching provided by Texas head coach Rick Barnes.

“I like his coaching style and the way he develops point guards,” Lucas said. “It’s hard to say no to that.”

As a freshman for Florida, Lucas averaged 8.5 points, 2.3 assists and led the Gators in 3-point shooting, hitting 43.5 percent from behind the three-point line. He was also named to the SEC all-freshman team.

According to Florida head coach Billy Donovan, Lucas left because he wanted to play point guard, a position that Donovan had given to sophomore Nick Calathes.

The 5-foot-10-inch Lucas can enroll at Texas for the spring semester beginning on Jan. 20, but cannot play this season. It has not yet been determined whether Lucas will be able to play at the start of the 2009-2010 season or if he will have to wait until the spring semester. His classification (sophomore or junior) is also up in the air because he played in one exhibition game with Florida this season.

Lucas is the son of former NBA player and coach John Lucas.