Mohamed Bamba, the second overall recruit in the 2017 class, picked Texas over Kentucky and other top schools as his 1-year destination before declaring for the NBA Draft.
Bamba averaged 12.9 points, 10.5 rebounds and 3.7 blocks in 30 games for the Longhorns. He even showed his range, taking 51 three point shots and making 14 of them.
The popular prospect is expected to go high in this summer’s draft, but would he have gone as high in last year’s if he had been allowed to skip college and declare out of high school?
Bamba told ESPN’s Rachel Nichols that he would have preferred to declare last year after he finished high school instead of spending a year in college before declaring.
“But at the same time, I could have had a year of NBA development and had a year head start,” Bamba said. “So, obviously, I would love to have that opportunity if it was there for me.”
It will be interesting to see if any other one-and-done players echo Bamba’s comments. It’s also interesting that if Bamba was looking for NBA preparation, why didn’t he select Kentucky?
It’s worth the question, considering the amount of first-round picks and NBA All-stars head coach John Calipari has produced.