by David Cassilo / @dcassilo

Highly-touted freshman Khem Birch has left the Pittsburgh program and returned home to Canada. The McDonald’s All-American, who was averaging 4.4 ppg and 5.0 rpg, is undecided about whether he will transfer from or return to the Panthers.

Birch’s decision was certainly not from a lack of playing time. Under Jamie Dixon, he was an exception — a freshman who was playing serious minutes. Birch started the last six games and led the team with 1.9 bpg.

Both Dixon and Birch have said little regarding the decision thus far.

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

“Khem has decided to leave the team for personal reasons,” Dixon said in a statement. “We thank Khem for his contribution to our program over the last semester and wish him great success in the future.”

If Birch decides to transfer, he will need to sit out two semesters before he can return. He also can enter this June’s NBA draft.