You are probably asking yourself, “a college basketball combine?” I did. Come on?
Well, apparently Coach Cal has set up an NBA combine at the Joe Craft Center inviting all NBA team scouts to watch DeAndre Liggins, Brandon Knight, Terrence Jones and Josh Harrellson perform drills conducted by NBA personnel on May 2nd and 3rd.
The combine is designed to let the players get a true evaluation by the pros prior to the May 8th deadline to withdraw their names from the 2011 draft. Here’s Coaches statement below:
“My preference, of course, is to again coach all three of these underclassmen but we also have the obligation to these young men and their families to help them make the best, most educated decisions for their futures.
There are basically three things that led us to creating this first-of-it’s-kind combine:
1. NBA teams are prohibited from working out or having contact with any players until after the Declared List is released, which happened on April 28.
2. This means players have only just over a week in which to meet with and workout for teams before an ultimate decision must be made.
3. The players are not allowed to miss class during the week to travel to workouts or to visit with teams.
Because of these limitations and our unending desire to always be a players-first program, we have arranged for these two days of workouts and accompanying one-on-one interviews after classes so that NBA personnel can get a complete picture of the type of student-athletes in our program at the University of Kentucky.
My hope is this will allow our players to get direct feedback from NBA decision-makers and hopefully create a clearer picture of what their NBA potential may be. Instead of us telling them what we are hearing, they can hear directly from the clubs.
(All of the underclassmen are taking the necessary precautions to protect their future collegiate eligibility under NCAA bylaw 188.8.131.52.1.1 which would allow them to return to UK.)
I also think that for a player like Josh, these workouts will allow NBA teams to see the type of commitment, skill and determination he showed the Big Blue Nation all season long.
Lastly, I want to thank our Athletic Director, Mitch Barnhart and his staff for helping to formalize this unique combine and opportunity for our student-athletes. It is yet another example of how Kentucky basketball is the gold standard.”
Atta boy Cal, promote the brand!!!!!!