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 Saturday, May 6
St. John's recruit second prep to bypass college
 By Andy Katz

McDonald's All-American Darius Miles announced Friday that he will enter the NBA draft instead of attending St. John's at a news conference. ESPN.com reported Thursday that Miles would make announcement.

Miles, a 6-foot-9 power forward from East St. Louis, Ill., signed to play at St. John's in the fall but still hasn't qualified academically. Sources at St. John's confirmed that Miles told the staff Thursday that he would declare for the draft Friday.

"Hopefully I can succeed at what I'm trying to do instead of going to college," Miles said during the news conference.

NBA scouts have followed Miles more than any other high school player this season with Vancouver, Houston and the Los Angeles Clippers going to his latest game last weekend in Louisville. NBA scouts told ESPN.com that Miles is a lock for the lottery.

Miles scored 15 points in 26 minutes in the Nike Hoop Summit game at the Final Four in Indianapolis. Miles averaged 19 points and 14 rebounds a game for East St. Louis High last season.

The 212-pound small forward could end up playing shooting guard with his ability to put the ball on the floor. Miles averaged 22 points, 12 rebounds and seven blocks in leading East St. Louis to a third-place finish in the Illinois Class AA basketball tournament.

Miles will become the second high school player to declare for the draft. Fellow McDonald's all-American DeShawn Stevenson of Fresno, Calif., declared for the draft Tuesday. He sent out an official press release Wednesday announcing his intentions to skip college. The 6-foot-5 Stevenson signed with Kansas but hasn't qualified yet.

Miles is the 20th underclassmen to declare for the draft with decisions still pending from fellow high school players Mario Austin (Mississippi State signee), Alton Ford (Houston signee), Texas' Chris Mihm, former Alabama guard Schea Cotton and Georgia Tech center Alvin Jones.

The deadline for declaring is May 14. Like Stevenson, Miles cannot attend college if he declares for the draft. High school and junior college players aren't given the same courtesy NCAA players are once they declare for the draft. NCAA players can return to college if they pull out by June 21, a week before the draft.

Andy Katz is a senior writer at ESPN.com

Early-entry candidates for NBA draft