Michigan forwards D.J. Wilson and Moe Wagner announced today that they are entering the NBA draft but not hiring agents. That will allow them to withdraw from the draft and return to school, if they choose.
Wilson took a major leap as a third-year player this season, averaging 11 points per game. He announced his NBA plans on Twitter.
The deadline to withdraw from the draft is May 24. The players likely will have a good idea about their projection at that point, as the NBA combine will be May 9-14 in Chicago.
With his 7-foot-3 wingspan, the 6-foot-10 Wilson became a legitimate NBA prospect this season, shooting 37% from three-point range. Having just completed his redshirt sophomore year, Wilson can enter the draft multiple times, under new NCAA rules.
Wagner exploded in his second season, averaging 12.1 points and 4.2 rebounds per game and shooting 39.5% from three-point range.
ESPN.com’s Chad Ford ranks Wagner at No. 25 in the 2017 NBA draft and tweeted today that both players are "likely late first-round" picks. Ford ranks Wilson at No. 31. DraftExpress.com lists Wilson as its No. 34 overall prospect.
With their skill sets, both seem likely to get a combine invitation, allowing NBA personnel to see them up close. Because neither played any real minutes in 2015-16 -- Wagner 8.6 and Wilson 6.1 -- and were not elite-level recruits, they're virtually new prospects to the NBA.
Neither player indicated his plans following Michigan's Sweet 16 loss to Oregon, with both saying declaring wasn't on their mind. Michigan requested NBA advisory committee evaluations on both players, plus next year's seniors, Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman and Duncan Robinson, a spokesman confirmed. The evaluations were first reported by mlive.com.
Today's announcements likely are a reason U-M aggressively has pursued graduate transfers recently.
There is one available scholarship open aside from Wilson's and Wagner's. It's being held for five-star high school center Mohamed Bamba, who has U-M on his final list.
Wagner and Wilson are the latest in a string of NBA prospects since Beilein came to Michigan 10 years ago. Beginning with Manny Harris leaving as a junior in 2010, U-M has had a steady succession of departures. In 2011 (Darius Morris), 2013 (Trey Burke, Tim Hardaway Jr.) and 2014 (Glenn Robinson III, Mitch McGary and Nik Stauskas), Michigan had early entries and all remained in the NBA draft.
In a few other cases (Harris and DeShawn Sims in 2009, Burke in 2012, Robinson and McGary in 2013, Caris LeVert in 2015), U-M players have asked for the NBA feedback and remained in school.
Detroit Free Press