Courtney Ramey

Draft Decisions: J. Lewis, Wong, Flanigan, Pullin, More

Marquette forward Justin Lewis, who entered the draft this spring coming off his sophomore season, has decided to keep his name in the 2022 draft pool, forgoing his remaining NCAA eligibility, reports Jeremy Woo of SI.com (Twitter link).

Lewis enjoyed a breakout year in 2021/22, averaging 16.8 PPG and 7.9 RPG on .440/.349/.761 shooting in 32 games (32.2 MPG) for the Golden Eagles. Lewis comes in at No. 45 on ESPN’s latest big board, though Woo suggests he has a chance to be a first-round pick.

With the NCAA’s withdrawal deadline only about 12 hours away, let’s round up several more of the latest draft decisions made by early entrants

  • Miami guard Isaiah Wong is returning to school for his senior year, he announced today (via Instagram). It’s the second time Wong has tested the draft waters and eventually pulled out, so if he declares again next season, he won’t have the option of withdrawing.
  • Auburn junior wing Allen Flanigan is withdrawing from the draft, while UC-Riverside junior guard Zyon Pullin is expected to do the same, reports Jeff Goodman of Stadium (Twitter links).
  • The following players are withdrawing from the draft, according to Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports (all five are Twitter links): Memphis senior forward DeAndre Williams, senior guard Courtney Ramey, Samford junior guard Ques Glover, senior guard Donald Carey, and Virginia Tech senior forward Justyn Mutts. Ramey, who played for Texas last season, is currently in the transfer portal, while Carey is transferring from Georgetown to Maryland.

Trevion Williams, Jalen Williams, Others Entering 2022 Draft

Purdue forward/center Trevion Williams will forgo his final year of college eligibility and sign with an agent, the school announced today in a press release. After testing the draft waters a year ago, Williams will go pro this time around.

The No. 45 prospect on ESPN’s big board, Williams came off the bench for the Boilermakers for most of 2021/22, averaging 12.0 PPG, 7.4 RPG, and 3.0 APG in 37 appearances (20.1 MPG). In his scouting report on Williams, Mike Schmitz of ESPN said the senior is one of the best passing big men in the country.

Another Williams, Santa Clara junior guard Jalen Williams, is also entering the 2022 NBA draft, according to Jonathan Givony of ESPN, who notes that Williams will maintain his college eligibility. Jalen is ranked just three spots behind Trevion on ESPN’s board, at No. 48.

Jalen Williams earned First-Team All-WCC honors after leading the conference in scoring, with 18.0 PPG on .513/.396/.809 shooting. His defensive versatility, passing feel, and shooting potential all intrigue NBA teams, says Givony.

Here are some of the other prospects recently declaring for the draft:

Expected to remain in the draft:

Testing the draft waters:

Draft Notes: McBride, McNeil, Liddell, Ramey, Wheeler

West Virginia guard Miles McBride has decided to remain in the draft, according to Jonathan Givony of ESPN. McBride told Mountaineers coach Bob Huggins on Friday, sources tell Greg Carey of Metro News.

“This was definitely a difficult decision,” McBride said. “Huggs has done so much for me. I love West Virginia, the fans and the entire city of Morgantown. Leaving will be hard, but it’s always been my dream to play in the league. Leaving now gives me the best chance to do that.”

The 20-year-old was a second-team All-Big 12 selection as a sophomore, averaging 15.9 points, 4.8 assists and 3.9 rebounds in 29 games. He is ranked 33rd in ESPN’s list of the top 100 prospects and had a strong showing at last week’s combine in Chicago.

“The main reason was the feedback I got from the NBA’s undergraduate advisory committee. Being drafted in the late first to early second round is what I’ve heard the most,” McBride said. “I had a great week at the NBA combine and at my pro day, meeting with NBA teams and hearing from them directly how interested they are in me.”

There’s more on the draft:

  • West Virginia will keep Sean McNeil, who is expected to withdraw from the draft and return to school for his senior season, tweets Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports. The shooting specialist averaged 12.2 PPG this year and connected at 38.8% from three-point range.
  • Ohio State power forward E.J. Liddell has decided to forgo the draft and return for another season with the Buckeyes, Givony writes in a separate story. Liddell had a breakout season as a sophomore, posting 16.2 points, 6.7 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game. “This was a pretty difficult decision,” he said. “No one in my family has ever been this close to getting to a professional league. After many conversations with my parents and coaches, I understood that returning was the best thing for me. Anyone can get signed to play in the NBA. I absolutely could have gotten a contract. But it’s not about getting in the NBA, it’s about staying in for the long term.”
  • Texas guard Courtney Ramey and Kentucky guard Sahvir Wheeler are also pulling out of the draft, according to Jeff Goodman of Stadium (Twitter links).

Draft Notes: Carton, Ramey, Culver, International Prospects

Marquette sophomore guard D.J. Carton has decided to enter the 2021 NBA draft and forgo his remaining college eligibility, the program announced in a press release.

Carton, who transferred to Marquette after spending his freshman year at Ohio State, averaged 13.0 points and 3.4 assists per game in 27 contests (31.1 MPG) in 2020/21. However, he struggled with his three-point shot, making just 28.2% of his attempts after knocking down 40.0% as a freshman. He also turned the ball over 3.2 times per game.

Here are a few more draft-related updates:

  • Texas junior guard Courtney Ramey announced on Instagram that he’ll test the draft waters. Ramey averaged 12.2 PPG and 3.9 APG in 26 games (33.5 MPG) for the Longhorns in 2020/21.
  • As 247Sports.com first reported and as Schuyler Callihan of SI.com further details, West Virginia forward/center Derek Culver has decided to leave school and go pro, forgoing his senior year. He put up 14.3 PPG and 9.4 RPG in 29 games (26.3 MPG) for the Mountaineers as a junior.
  • It has been more challenging than ever for NBA teams to scout international prospects in person this year, but there are a handful of players overseas generating buzz as potential first-round picks. Mike Schmitz of ESPN (Insider link) and John Hollinger of The Athletic both took a closer look at some of those top international prospects, with a focus on intriguing Turkish big man Alperen Sengun.
  • Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report identifies three realistic targets for each NBA team with a first-round pick, based on their needs and where they’ll likely be drafting.