Kendric Davis

Draft Notes: Juzang, Abmas, Last-Minute Decisions

After leading UCLA to the Final Four, Johnny Juzang will withdraw from the NBA draft and return for his junior season. Juzang announced his decision on Twitter about an hour before the NCAA’s Wednesday deadline of midnight Eastern Time for early entrants to pull out of the draft and retain their eligibility.

“Going through the draft process has been an amazing experience,” he wrote. “I was blessed to connect with great people, learn and grow, and get a feel for life at the next level. I want to thank everyone who has helped me in this process including my family, trainers, school and especially my dad who helped me for countless hours!”

There was talk that Juzang might be a first-round pick after an outstanding performance in the NCAA tournament, but a disappointing showing at the combine hurt his status, according to Chad Ford (Twitter link), who speculates that he could be back in first-round consideration next year.

There’s more on last-minute draft decisions:

Draft Notes: Queta, Davis, Hunt, Harmon, Devoe

Utah State center Neemias Queta will enter the draft, according to Jonathan Givony of ESPN. The seven-foot Queta averaged 14.9 PPG, 10.1 RPG, and 3.3 BPG as a junior this season. The Mountain West Player of the Year is ranked No. 75 overall on ESPN’s Best Available list and 10th among center prospects.

We have more draft decisions:

  • SMU’s duo of Kendric Davis and Feron Hunt are declaring for the draft, according to CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein (Twitter links). Hunt is also signing with an agent, while Davis will maintain his eligibility. Davis, a junior guard, averaging 19.0 PPG and 7.6 APG this season. Hunt, a junior forward, averaging 11.1 PPG and 7.9 RPG.
  • Oklahoma sophomore guard De’Vion Harmon plans on entering the draft, he declared on his Instagram page. He averaged 12.9 PPG, 2.1 APG and 1.1 SPG this season.
  • Georgia Tech 6”5” junior Michael Devoe will also test the draft waters, according to Ken Sugiura of the Atlanta Journal Constitution. He averaged 15.0 PPG, 4.3 RPG and 3.3 APG and made 40% of his 3-pointers this season.
  • Florida big man Colin Castleton is testing the draft waters, he announced on Twitter. As a junior for the Gators, Castleton averaged 12.4 PPG and 6.4 RPG in 24 games (25.7 MPG).

Early Entry Deadline For 2020 NBA Draft Has Passed

The deadline for potential early entrants to declare for the 2020 NBA draft fell on April 26 at 11:59pm ET, which means prospects who aren’t automatically draft-eligible can no longer enter this year’s pool.

Players who have entered the draft don’t necessarily have to stay in, as long as they haven’t hired an agent — or as long as they’re working with one of 23 agents certified by the NCAA. Currently, the deadline for NCAA players to withdraw from the draft and maintain their college eligibility is June 3, though it’s possible that date will be adjusted if the NBA draft is postponed.

The NBA has a separate withdrawal deadline from the NCAA’s, allowing prospects to pull out as late as 10 days before the draft. With the draft scheduled for June 25, the NBA’s withdrawal deadline is June 15 — that date is generally the one to watch for international prospects, who don’t have to worry about maintaining NCAA eligibility.

Our full list of early entrants can be found right here. While we did our best to make our list as accurate as possible, some players who declared in recent weeks may have slipped through the cracks, while others reported to have entered the draft may have had a change of heart.

The NBA should formally release its initial early entrant list for 2020 within the next two or three days, so we’ll update our list at that point to reflect the league’s official data.

Here are the latest additions we’ve made to our list:

And here are a couple players who had previously planned to enter the draft who ended up opting to return to school instead. They’ve been removed from our list:

It appears there are approximately 190-ish early entrants in this year’s draft pool, which would be a significant step down from the last couple years, when that total has been in the neighborhood of 235.

Of course, as ESPN’s Jonathan Givony notes (via Twitter), the real question will be how many of these initial early entrants end up staying in the draft. That number landed at 98 last year, and 91 in 2018. It will likely end up lower this year, not just because the early total is lower, but due to the coronavirus pandemic. As Givony observes, many prospects who entered the draft may not have much more info about where they stand by the June 3 withdrawal deadline than they have now.

Draft Notes: UAC, Hayes, Early Entrants

NBA executive vice president of basketball operations Kiki VanDeWeghe issued a memo to NCAA coaches on Tuesday morning telling them that the league will be accepting applications from college players seeking feedback from the Undergraduate Advisory Committee, per Adrian Wojnarowski and Jonathan Givony of ESPN.

The UAC provides potential early entrants with feedback on their stock – based on input from NBA executives – to help them make informed decisions on whether or not to declare for the draft. Prospects who want to test the draft waters must first apply for an evaluation from the UAC.

This year’s deadline to apply for that evaluation is April 16 — it’s not clear whether that date will be pushed back in the coming weeks, given the uncertain nature of the NBA’s hiatus. Adam Zagoria of Forbes tweeted today that multiple sources expect the draft to be postponed until July or August.

Whether or not the UAC application deadline changes, the process figures to be more important than usual this spring for prospects seeking feedback, as ESPN duo points out. Team executives are preparing for the possibility that scouting and workout opportunities will be extremely limited, if not entirely eliminated, leading up to this year’s draft.

According to Wojnarowski and Givony, VanDeWeghe acknowledged the “rapidly evolving” situation in his memo, noting that the league would advise NCAA coaches and players of any changes to the pre-draft process “whenever such information is available.”

Here’s more on the 2020 NBA draft: