UC vs UNLV MBB 11-30 (17 of 19).jpg

UC center Chris Vogt (33) slams down a dunk during the second half of the men's basketball regular season game against UNLV at Fifth Third Arena in Cincinnati Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019.

University of Cincinnati men's basketball center Chris Vogt declared for the 2020 NBA Draft Tuesday via Twitter.

"I want to thank my family and friends for always supporting me through everything," Vogt said. "I want to thank all of the coaches who have ever coached me for helping me get to where I am now.

"My freshman year I wouldn't of ever guessed I would've even had the opportunity to be in this situation, and being able to overcome all of the adversity I've faced my college career. The amount of growth I've had on and off the court every year has been a testament to my faith and hard work, and only excites me for where I'll be a year from now," Vogt added. "However, I'm currently thankful to just be here at this point.

"Returning for my senior year will always be a viable option, and I will maintain my eligibility," Vogt said.

While the announcement comes as a relative surprise, it makes sense for Vogt. Last year, the NCAA changed their rule regarding student-athletes who submit for the draft. This allows these athletes to sign with an NCAA-certified agent and feel the market of their demand at the professional level and, most notably, remain eligible to return to their school.

Vogt is coming off of a breakout junior year in which he averaged 11 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks. He started 29 of UC's 30 games. His 64.8% field goal percentage led the American Athletic Conference, while his blocks and offensive rebounds ranked within the top-10.

The 7-foot-1 Vogt was recently ranked by David Cobb of CBS Sports as one of the top 15 college basketball players coming off breakout seasons to keep an eye on.

Vogt transferred from Northern Kentucky University last year, and it was a slightly easier transition than most. Not only because of the close proximity between NKU and UC, but because he followed in the footsteps of former NKU head coach John Brannen.

When Brannen was hired by UC in April 2019, Vogt soon followed. Following Vogt's announcement to submit for the draft, Brannen showed support.

"Chris, his parents and myself have had consistent conversations over the course of the last several weeks," Brannen said. "We are completely in support of Chris' decision and will be available to assist him when needed."

To read a full feature on Vogt and Brannen's relationship, click here.

Vogt will have to officially decide whether to stay in the draft or return to UC for a senior season by June 15.

The 2020 NBA Draft is scheduled to take place June 25 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. With the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, it's unclear if the dates of the event will change or not.