Reaction to new names on NBA draft list

April, 28, 2011

Quick hitters on Thursday:

• The NBA released the official early-entry list for the June 23 draft, and there were a few new names on the list. Whether or not they withdraw by the May 8 NCAA deadline is still unclear.

• Junior Jeremy Green, Stanford's leading scorer, declared for the draft. He is possibly looking to follow in the footsteps of former teammate Landry Fields. As a senior last year, Fields was a surprise second-round pick by New York (39th overall) and enjoyed a solid rookie season. Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins said Thursday that Fields' success with the Knicks could have an impact on Green. He said Green told him he will try to seek out some workouts this week and next. Green is on academic suspension at Stanford, but Dawkins said it's only for the spring quarter. He said Green is in good academic standing for the fall if he chooses to return to school. But Green isn't on campus this month because of the suspension, which means he's not being influenced by the Cardinal staff. Losing Green would be a crushing blow to Stanford as it attempts to move up in the Pac-12 in 2012. "He's an all-Pac-10 player, and he'll be a senior, so we would certainly miss him if he decided to stay in,'' Dawkins said. "I know he wants to see where he is in the draft. But on our end, he's good to come back if he doesn't keep his name in.''

• Texas A&M's David Loubeau declared, and the assumption in College Station from coach Mark Turgeon and his staff is that he will return to school. But the Aggies have been burned before in this process, most recently when Chinemelu Elonu stayed in the draft in 2009.

• Minnesota's Ralph Sampson III surprised the coaching staff by declaring for the NBA draft. The junior big man has had a hard time finding consistency during his three years in Minneapolis. But the coaching staff at Minnesota has no idea what Sampson III will do between now and May 8. If Sampson were to leave, it wouldn't be a crushing blow. Now had it been Trevor Mbakwe, that would have been a different story. The Gophers are befuddled by Sampson and his inability to be demonstrative and assertive on a regular basis.

• Valparaiso leading scorer Brandon Wood declared for the draft. But according to Valpo assistant coach Bryce Drew, Wood wanted to see the process and get a sense of where he stood. If he doesn't hear anything positive, then he will withdraw from the draft. But there is another curveball. Wood is a fourth-year junior at Valpo and is graduating. He started his career at Southern Illinois and went to a junior college for a year. The Crusaders aren't expecting Wood to return, even if he were to withdraw with the option that Wood would transfer to a Big Ten school for graduate school and a fifth year. One option for him might be Michigan State, according to a source. If Wood were to join the Spartans, it would be a huge pickup because of his ability to score from the perimeter.

• UAB's Cameron Moore, who was second on the Blazers in scoring and tops in rebounding, has declared. Coach Mike Davis isn't sure what Moore will do. He said Moore wants to find out where he stands in the draft and put his name in over the weekend -- just before the deadline.

• A number of the underclassmen will try to get into the massive New Jersey Nets workout May 7-8 at their training facility. The hope is that some teams will give some of the early entrants who are still holding out on a decision an indication of where they stand before the 11:59 p.m. deadline on May 8.

• A number of NBA personnel said they wouldn't be surprised if Maryland's Jordan Williams, Butler's Shelvin Mack, Washington's Isaiah Thomas, Boston College's Reggie Jackson or Fresno State's Greg Smith all stayed in the draft. But there is a consensus already that Michigan's Darius Morris, Xavier's Tu Holloway, Georgetown's Hollis Thompson, Miami's Reggie Johnson, Pitt's Ashton Gibbs and Northwestern's John Shurna should go back to school before they make a mistake of leaving too soon, and in the case of those who can't make an NBA roster, a major error in giving up their eligibility.

• American coach Jeff Jones, who seems like a natural fit for either George Washington or George Mason, hasn't been contacted by either school as of Thursday, according to a source with knowledge of the situation. Jones is recovering from hip replacement surgery. George Mason athletic director Tom O'Connor is moving at his own pace in finding a replacement for Jim Larranaga (Miami) and has said he wants to hire a current head coach.

• Former Wyoming head coach Heath Schroyer has joined Dave Rice's staff at UNLV as an assistant. Like Rice, Schroyer has strong connections to BYU, working under Steve Cleveland and along with current BYU coach Dave Rose in Provo. Schroyer was fired by Wyoming in February. While Wyoming athletic director Tom Burman said he and Schroyer mutually agreed to part ways once Schroyer knew his fate, Schroyer denies that claim, saying that he didn't want to leave his post as head coach. Regardless, Schroyer should be a strong addition to Rice's staff at UNLV with his knowledge of the region and conference.

Andy Katz | email

ESPN Senior Writer




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