Texas freshman Mohamed Bamba has elected to enter the 2018 NBA draft, a source tells Evan Daniels of 247Sports. While Daniels’ report doesn’t specify whether or not Bamba will hire an agent, the young center has confirmed the decision himself and said he won’t be returning to school, so he’ll forgo his remaining college eligibility (Twitter link via Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com).
Bamba, long viewed as a potential top-five pick in the 2018 NBA draft, averaged a double-double during his lone college season. In 30 games for the Longhorns, he recorded 12.9 PPG, 10.5 RPG, and an impressive 3.7 BPG.
Jonathan Givony’s most recent mock draft at ESPN.com has Bamba coming off the board at No. 5 to the Kings. Noting that every NBA team is looking for a big man capable of anchoring a defense, Givony suggests Bamba has that potential, pointing to his “rare combination of length, shot-blocking instincts and offensive promise.”