The 21-year-old was named Big 12 Newcomer of the Year after transferring from Mississippi State. He averaged 14.2 points in 39 games and was named Most Outstanding Player in the Big 12 Tournament and the NCAA’s Midwest Regional.
“He had a terrific season this year and was one of the best players in the NCAA tournament,” said Jayhawks coach Bill Self. “I think this is good timing for Malik. We wish nothing but the best for him and appreciate all his efforts. We all know his best basketball is still ahead of him.”
Newman is listed 46th in the latest list of top 100 prospects compiled by Jonathan Givony of ESPN.
There are more early draft entrants to round up:
- Duke’s Trevon Duval will enter the draft and sign with an agent, tweets Jeff Goodman of ESPN. Duval averaged 10.3 points per game and comes in 50th on Givony’s list.
- Boston College teammates Jerome Robinson and Ky Bowman will both enter the draft without hiring agents, writes John Rothstein of Fanrag Sports. Partners in the Eagles’ backcourt, Robinson averaged a 20.7/3.6/3.3 line this season, while Bowman put up 17.6/6.8/4.7. Robinson is ranked 39th by Givony, while Bowman didn’t make the list.
- Mississippi State’s Lamar Peters will declare for the draft, but won’t hire an agent, Rothstein relays in a separate story. The point guard, who averaged 9.6 points and 4.5 assists this year, also isn’t listed by Givony.
- Auburn’s Mustapha Heron plans to declare for the draft and sign with an agent, relays Evan Daniels of 247Sports. The 20-year-old sophomore wing averaged 16.4 points and 5.3 rebounds per game this year. “It’s always been a dream to play at the highest level,” Heron said. “Now is a better time than any other time. I’m coming off a pretty good season and the buzz is there and I feel like I’m ready mentally and physically.” He’s also not ranked by Givony.
- Issuf Sanon of Urkaine plans to enter the draft, according to Mike Schmitz of ESPN. The 18-year-old guard has a multiyear contract with Petrol Olimpija Ljubljana in Slovenia that contains an NBA out each season. He has until June 11 to withdraw, but his agent, Daniel Moldovan, said Sanon plans to remain in the draft. “Since moving to Olimpija Ljubljana my game has grown,” Sanon said. “Working with coaches, I feel myself getting better every day. It has been a dream of mine to play in the NBA and I’m excited for this next chapter.” Givony rates him as the 69th best prospect.