Impact of NBA Draft Decisions

The NBA Draft combine is this week and the official deadline for players to either stay in the draft or return to College. For each case, we will break down the impact of this decision both for the school and for the player, whether it be by their draft decision impact on their future pro careers and by looking at what this means for each school. This will update as the Draft Decisions are made with the most recent decisions being listed on the top.

Johnny Juzang – Returning to UCLA

Cody Riley – Returning to UCLA

Max Abmas – Returning to Oral Roberts

Scotty Pippen Jr – Returning to Vanderbilit

Tyson Etienne – Returning to Wichita State

Jose Alvarado – Staying in the NBA Draft

Jordan Goodwin – Staying in the NBA Draft

Kendric Davis – Returning to SMU

Terrence Shannon Jr – Returning to Texas Tech

Ron Harper Jr – Returning to Rutgers

Geo Baker – Returning to Rutgers

Marcus Bagley – Returning to College Basketball

Jason Preston – Staying in the NBA Draft

Jason Preston has decided to turn down the opportunity to return to Ohio and he will head to the NBA Draft. Preston was fantastic last year and has all the makings of an NBA guard because of his size, athleticism and scoring ability, although I still think he needs a couple more years to grow as a basketball player. Ohio still has a solid roster that should be able to compete for a MAC Championship.

Fardaws Aimaq – Returning to Utah Valley

Broke by Sean, Fardaws Aimaq has decided to return to Utah Valley for another season, with the hope to chase down an NCAA Tournament spot. Utah Valley now enters into next season as one of the teams to beat in the WAC thanks to his return, as he is the reigning WAC Player of the year and should continue to dominate the league. Aimaq will have chances to play professional basketball down the line but making the NCAA Tournament and winning a league title will be his hope for this season.

CJ Walker – Returning to UCF

CJ Walker has decided to return to UCF for his junior season, leaving room for the Knights to one of the better teams in the AAC heading into next season. Walker is a 6’8 forward that has all the athleticism in the world and he might legitimately be one of the ten most athletic basketball players on the planet. If he can add more than just being a raw athlete to his game, he will make it in the NBA, although for now, he will have a chance to help UCF return to the NCAA Tournament.

Hunter Dickinson – Returning to Michigan

Michigan gets their anchor inside in Hunter Dickinson who will return for his sophomore season. Dickinson is a 7’0 big man that is a great low-post scorer, although he does have weaknesses defensively, and with overall speed and agility. He will need to improve those attributes to really make it in the NBA but he will likely be an All-American this year.

Ochai Agbaji – Returning to Kansas

One of the truly most up in the air decisions was Ochai Agbaji who has decided to return to Kansas for his senior season. Agbaji is a 6’5 wing that is a good shooter, scorer, and defender although he’s not elite at any one trait, which is the reason he probably was a borderline draft pick. Agbaji will look to improve shooting-wise this season in order to help his draft stock and also to help Kansas contend for a National Championship.

Remy Martin – Returning to College Basketball, Transferring to Kansas

When Remy Martin committed to Kansas, it seemed like this was an inevitability but Martin makes it official now. Martin is a 6’1 quick guard that can create shots off the bounce, shoot it, and gets assists. His usage will likely take a hit this season but he’ll do so for a chance to win a National Championship.

Kofi Cockburn – Returning to College Basketball

The transfer portal has officially landed its biggest name as Kofi Cockburn has decided to return to College Basketball and enter the transfer portal. His future school is unknown but his skill set is not as he’s a 7’1 big man that is a good low-post score, physical presence, and good shot-blocker. If he can work on his agility and speed, he will be more than just a great College Basketball player.

Jaden Shackelford – Returning to College Basketball

Alabama’s leading scorer is returning to College, although his next location is very much unknown. Shackelford is a 6’5 guard that is a good shooter, scorer, and solid defender. Whether he plays at Alabama or somewhere else, he will be one of the best players in the sport, and should he continue to develop his jump shot, he will land in the NBA.

Dawson Garcia – Returning to College Basketball

Dawson Garcia has already put his name in the transfer portal and is now returning to College Basketball. Garcia is a skilled big man that has NBA potential but he’s really just not quite ready for the NBA. Whichever team gets him will look to develop him into their roster for what might be one year before he goes to the NBA Draft.

Isaiah Wong – Returning to Miami

Isaiah Wong has decided to return to Miami for another season, which is big news for Miami. Wong is a 6’3 guard that can score the ball at a high level, although he’s probably not a good enough scorer to play in the NBA right now. Look for Wong to continue to work on developing from a scoring perspective while trying to lead Miami back to the NCAA Tournament.

Hasahn French – Staying in the NBA Draft

Hasahn French has decided to turn professional, despite not really having any chances of playing professionally. French is a good interior big man that could play professionally overseas or play in the NFL.

Maurice Calloo – Returning to Oregon State

Calloo is returning to Oregon State for his senior season, which is big news for the Beavers. Calloo has the size and shooting ability to maybe be a 3-and-D wing at the next level but he has to improve in a major way to make that happen. Calloo’s return gives the Beavers some extra front-court help needed to contend for an NCAA Tournament spot.

Roman Silva – Returning to Oregon State

The Beavers are getting their 7’1 inside anchor Roman Silva back for another season. Silva has the size, physicality, and rebounding to be an interesting prospect but he’s not an NBA player yet and probably projects in the future as an overseas option.

Warith Alatishe – Returning to Oregon State

Warith Alatishe is returning to Oregon State for his senior season. Alatishe is a 6’7 freak athlete that can defend multiple positions, although he’s not a shooter. Alatishe needs to improve his shooting to make it in the NBA but his energy will help Oregon State be competitive in the PAC 12.

Aaron Wiggins – Staying in the NBA Draft

One of the more up in the air decisions has been made as Aaron Wiggins is staying in the NBA Draft. Wiggins is a 6’6 wing that has all the skills to be a good 3-and-D player at the next level if he can hit shots more consistently. As for Maryland, they have a solid roster but it is one that lacks outside shooting, which is a major issue.

Julian Champagnie – Returning to St. John’s

One of the biggest swing draft decisions has been made as Julian Champagnie has decided to return to Saint John’s for another season. Champagnie is a 6’8 forward that is a pure scorer, he can shoot it at a high level while also scoring inside. His decision to return for another season makes Saint John’s a clear NCAA Tournament team heading into next season.

DeVante’ Jones – Returning to College Basketball, Transferring to Michigan

The reigning Sun Belt Player of the year has announced that he is returning to school, although he will remain committed to playing at Michigan. Jones is a 6’1 guard that can run the point and play off the ball, and he is a really good shooter and good defender. Look for Jones to fill into Mike Smith’s role and be a big piece to a Michigan team that is looking to repeat as Big Ten Champions.

Colin Castleton – Returning to Florida

Colin Castleton struggled even getting playing time at Michigan, so his impact at Florida came as a surprise, even for Draft evaluators. While he does possess so many traits of an NBA player, he still has room to grow in order to be seen as a Draft prospect. That said, he should fit nicely at the center spot for a Florida team that has hopes of returning to a Final Four.

EJ Liddell – Returning to Ohio State

EJ Liddell has decided to return to Ohio State for another season, making him an All-American candidate heading into next season. Liddell provides the physicality and athleticism to make him a great College player. His shot-making the NBA will be heavily reliant on him extending his range and being a stretch-four man.

Courtney Ramey – Returning to Texas

Texas guard Courtney Ramey returns to Texas and is looking to be the missing piece for a loaded Texas roster. Ramey is a 6’3 guard that can run the point (which he will do more next season) and is a good shooter. Ramey is probably not tall enough to be an NBA player but he will play professionally somewhere but having an opportunity to win a National Championship is an opportunity that is hard to turn down.

Sahvir Wheeler – Returning to College Basketball, Transferring to Kentucky

Sahvir Wheeler does what was highly expected, as he’s withdrawing from the NBA Draft and heading to Kentucky. Wheeler is a great facilitator, that can score but probably projects better as a facilitator than a scorer at Kentucky and in the NBA. He has the talent to be a professional basketball player at some point but he must develop his game and become a better shooter in order to do so.

Sean McNeil – Returning to West Virginia

While McBride leaving isn’t ideal, West Virginia will get Sean McNeil back for another season, and he should be the go-to guy for the Mountaineers next season. McNeil is a good shot-maker, so in time he will play professionally but he really needs to show he’s an elite consistent scorer to really find his way in the NBA.

Miles McBride – Staying in the NBA Draft

Miles McBuckets has unsurprisingly decided to stay in the NBA Draft. McBride is a good shot-maker, defender, and passer, leading him to likely being a late first or early second-round pick. For West Virginia, they no doubt are hurt by McBride deciding to stay in the NBA Draft but will have enough talent to still make the NCAA Tournament.

Jalen Wilson – Returning to Kansas

Kansas gets forward Jalen Wilson back for his sophomore season. Wilson is a 6’7 forward that is versatile, as he’s a good scorer, shooter, and rebounder, he’s a really good fit next to David McCormack inside. Wilson at one point was considered a potential First Round Pick but after a mid-season slump, the choice seemed apparent that he should return for another season and try to work on his overall consistency.

Moussa Cisse – Returning to College Basketball

Moussa Cisse had an inconsistent first year of College Basketball, making his return seem inevitable. With that being said, he’s a physical force that should be able to play in the NBA, thanks to his length and athleticism. Whichever team he suits up for next season will be getting a potential star at the center spot.

Joe Wieskamp – Staying in the NBA Draft

Wieskamp had a fantastic combine performance, his size and shooting performance were on full display, making it almost a guarantee that he will be drafted. For Iowa, Wieskamp’s departure should come as no surprise but nonetheless is a big loss, they have good players but no for sure NBA-level players at the moment, which will limit their ceiling.

Dalano Banton – Staying in the NBA Draft

Dalano Blanton has become somewhat of a unicorn prospect because of his size at the point guard position. He really impressed during combine week, making his decision to stay in the NBA Draft a good one. For Nebraska, they still are in a complete rebuild, and that would have been the case with or without Banton, although they are definitely worse off without him.

Quincy Guerrier – Returning to College Basketball, Transferring to Oregon

Oregon transfers continue to withdraw from the NBA Draft, the latest being Quincy Guerrier. Guerrier is a 6’7 forward that is a perfect modern-day four-man because of his skill set offensively, mixed with his size and physical traits that make him a good defender. The additions of Guerrier, De’Vion Harmon, and Jacob Young, to go with a talented roster that already had Will Richardson, Eric Williams Jr, and Nathan Bittle, makes this team the potential Pac 12 favorite.

Davion Mintz – Returning to Kentucky

Kentucky’s main issue last season was guard play and shooting and with Davion Mintz back and a collection of great additions already in the fold, Kentucky has addressed both those issues, making Mintz the final piece of a potential Championship level roster. Mintz is 6’3 and not great defensively or at running the point but he’s a great shooter. Mintz probably doesn’t have the NBA in his future but he theoretically could play overseas.

Darius Perry – Returning to UCF

UCF gets its leading scorer back for another season as Darius Perry will use his extra year of eligibility and return to UCF. Perry finally had an opportunity to be the main guy last season and flourished. He should continue to lead the Knights in scoring this season, while with some solid transfer additions, this UCF team should have a roster capable of making the NCAA Tournament.

Jordan Hall – Returning to Saint Joseph’s

The Hawks return one of their few bright spots in last season, as Jordan Hall is returning for another season. Hall is a 6’7 wing who can shoot it pretty well and has NBA potential down the road. Saint Joseph’s has a chance to be better than last year but still isn’t close to being an NCAA Tournament team.

Josh Primo – Staying in the NBA Draft

Josh Primo, one of the youngest players in College Basketball has decided to head to the NBA Draft. Primo has a lot of potential being a 6’6 guard with good ball skills and the ability to shoot at a high level, while he probably starts next season in the G-League he’s likely to make the NBA at some point and it might be in his best interest to strike while the iron is hot. Assuming Shackelford and Quinerly are back, that duo mixed with JD Davidson and a deep roster should be enough to win the SEC if things break their way.

Marcus Carr – Returning to College Basketball

In somewhat of a surprise, Marcus Carr has announced that he will return to College Basketball. Carr probably wasn’t going to be an NBA player next year and he might never make it in the NBA but he’s a very good basketball player. Whichever team lands him will land a point guard that can score and pass at an elite level.

Chris Smith – Staying in the NBA Draft

After missing much of last season, Chris Smith was one of the major question marks of this offseason but he has decided to stay in the NBA Draft. Smith has all the tools to make it in the NBA, he’s 6’9 and can shoot it at a high level, making him a prime 3-and-D candidate, he should be given a chance at the next level. UCLA still adds Myles Johnson to a team likely to return most everyone from their Final Four team.

Eric Ayala – Returning to Maryland

Maryland comes into this season with some high expectations, thanks to the additions on Qudus Wahab and Fatts Russell, but getting their leading scorer, Eric Ayala back for another season brings some program experience. Ayala is not an elite shooter and isn’t quite long enough to play in the NBA without developing that, however, he will have another season to develop and try to make the NBA next season.

De’Vion Harmon – Returning to College Basketball, Transferring to Oregon

Much like Jacob Young, De’Vion Harmon is returning to College Basketball and enrolling at Oregon. Harmon is a good ball-handler but was good playing off the ball this year and he’s a good scorer. Harmon doesn’t have any NBA potential at the moment but we’ve seen players become NBA talents after transferring to Oregon before.

Justin Bean – Returning to Utah State

Utah State has a new head coach in Ryan Odom, but what might be more important is the return of Justin Bean. Bean is a 6’7 forward that is tough and physical, while he took a step forward scoring last season. Bean probably isn’t an NBA player in the near future but his return is essentially big for an Aggies team needing a player like Bean.

Jeenathan Williams – Returning to Buffalo

Williams is a 6’5 guard that is a good shooter, scorer, and defender, his NBA chances are definitely still within the realm of possibility. Williams returns to a Buffalo team that could be the favorite in the league and at worst is probably second in the preseason rankings.

Feron Hunt – Staying in the NBA Draft

Hunt is a 6’8 forward that doesn’t shoot the ball, score the ball, or defend at a high level, it’s unlikely he ever plays an NBA game anytime soon but he could play overseas. Having played for three years, he might just be looking for a new start. For SMU, they still have Kendric Davis, who is a really good guard, he will be paired with the Weathers brothers and Tristan Clark, making them poised to be out of the bottom of the AAC.

Duane Washington Jr. – Staying in the NBA Draft

Duane Washington Jr. has announced that he will be heading to the NBA Draft and will not return to Ohio State. This comes as he had a really good G-League combine and was emerging as an NBA Draft candidate. The Buckeyes are still likely to return EJ Liddell, who will be an All-American candidate, they also have good role players in Jamari Wheeler, Justice Sueing, Kyle Young, and Justin Ahrens, while Malaki Branham is going to be good as a freshman and Meechie Johnson should take a step forward. That said, the Buckeyes take a major step back from a shooting/ scoring aspect as Washington was their best pure bucket-getter.

D.J. Burns Jr. – Returning to Winthrop

A new era of Winthrop Basketball will be headlined by DJ Burns Jr. Burns is a physical force at 6’9, 275 pounds, he’s a good inside scorer and defender which will both be key for Winthrop. It’s unlikely he ever plays an NBA game, so the decision seemed to be between playing overseas or returning to Winthrop.

Jacob Young – Returning to College Basketball, Transfering to Oregon

Young announced that he would be transferring to Oregon already this offseason but his name was still in the NBA Draft. His decison to return was expected as he’s probably not an NBA player, plus he can come back and be an impact player for an Oregon team with league Championship expectations.

Darius Days – Returning to LSU

The 6’7 forward is returning to LSU for another season, while his size and shooting are tools needed to be a modern-day four-man, he probably would’ve had to spend time in the G-League. For LSU, Days brings not only those skillsets but with a mostly brand new team, he will be the team leader. Days will be the likely leading scorer for a likely tournament team that includes talented additions such as Adam Miller, Xavier Pinson, and Efton Reid.

Darryl Morsell – Returning to College Basketball, Transferring to Marquette

The most up in the air decision has been made and Darryl Morsell is officially heading to Marquette. Morsell is a big, strong, and physical guard that can switch defensively, while he’s the reigning Big Ten Defensive Player of the year. His offensive game is still lacking for him to be an NBA talent next season but with playing on a likely bad Marquette team, he should have a chance to showcase his talents.

Kessler Edwards – Staying in NBA Draft

Kessler Edwards has been one of the standouts of the NBA combine and is looking like a guarenteed second-round pick if he wants to be. For Pepperdine, his departure leaves them in a spot where they are likely going to finish below .500 in WCC play.

Trevion Williams – Returning to Purdue

Trevion Williams is an old-traditional big man that probably doesn’t have much of an NBA future in front of him. That said, he’s going to be a great player for next season, his elite ability to score inside is going to be big for Purdue. Look for him to be an All-American candidate while he could lead Purdue to their most successful season in program history.

Keve Aluma – Returning to Virginia Tech

The Hokies return their leading scorer Keve Aluma from a team that received a 10 seed this past season. With Aluma, Tyrece Radford, Justyn Mutts, plus the addition of Storm Murphy, expectations should be for this team to finish Top-4 in the ACC. As for Aluma’s draft potential, if he can continue to develop his three point shot as well as improve his speed and quickness, he should be in the NBA somewhat soon.

Armando Bacot – Returning to North Carolina

The Tar Heels return their leading scorer from last year’s team in Armando Bacot, who is a 6’10” big man that has developed a really nice game inside. Bacot should fit in nicely to a team with pieces in Caleb Love, Kerwin Walton, Leaky Black, and Brady Manek, making the Tar Heels a Top-25 team heading into next season. Bacot just isn’t a good enough athlete for his skillset to make the NBA Draft at this point, there are a lot of great bigs in basketball but with the NBA going away from that, he will have to be a much better offensive player to land in the NBA.

Trey Murphy – Staying in the NBA Draft

Trey Murphy is a player who has slowly risen up draft boards and for good reason too, he’s a 6’7″ wing that can defend and shoot at a high-level. Murphy could have a Desmond Bane-like role where he comes in and immediately makes an impact for a playoff team. As for Virginia, they are left in a tough spot, Murphy would have been their best three-point shooter and with Jay Huff and Sam Hauser both gone as well, this Virginia team could be their worst since 2013. Maybe Kihei Clark and Jayden Gardner will them to a Top-5 seed but it’s no guarantee that happens.

Matthew Mayer – Returning to Baylor

It was kind of a surprise that Mayer entered his name in the NBA Draft to begin with but nonetheless, he made the right choice by returning to Baylor, as he’s not polished enough to be in the NBA right away and would’ve probably spent a year or two in the G-League. Mayer has all the tools needed to succeed at the next level, he’s very tall, a good defender, and a gifted scorer, who has shown an ability to drop 20 on any night. If he can bring it consistently next season, averaging upwards of 15 points per game on a Top-15 Baylor team, he could be a first-round pick next season.

Marcus Sasser – Returning to Houston

The Houston Cougars will once again go into this season with some lofty expectations, as they return Sasser and add Kyler Edwards to an already good Houston core of pieces that are coming off a Final Four birth. The Cougars should be a preseason Top-20 team that will look to once again finish the season with at least an appearance in the second weekend. Sasser will look to step in and be the main guy this season, at 6’1 he just doesn’t have a chance to be a pro in this upcoming draft class, if he becomes more of an alpha this year, I could envision a scenario in which he gets drafted next year.

Steffon Mitchell – Staying in the NBA Draft

After graduating from Boston College this past season, Steffon Mitchell has decided to stay in the NBA Draft, ending his college career. Mitchell is a 6’8 forward that is a good defender, solid scorer, good rebounder, and passer although he’s not elite at any of those traits. Don’t expect him to get drafted but maybe he could carve out a role in the G-League or overseas.

Mike DeVoe – Returning to Georgia Tech

DeVoe is a very good three-and-D type of player, he’s a solid and tough defender with a pure jump shot, it would be hard to think he wouldn’t at least carve out some sort of NBA career, albeit it will be at least a year down the line. For Georgia Tech they could be a sneaky team heading into next season (especially if Alvarado returns), that said they will have big holes to fill with Moses Wright already announcing he’s turning pro.

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