The NBA Draft is officially here and before the end of Thursday night, Maryland basketball could have two draft picks off to basketball’s highest level.
Kevin Huerter, who will likely be the first Terp selected in the first round in half a decade, declined a green room invitation and will instead watch from home. Meanwhile, Justin Jackson will be waiting much longer. Once projected to be a lottery pick, the Canadian’s a fringe second rounder now that the draft has arrived.
This year, commissioner Adam Silver will announce the picks from Barclays Arena in Brooklyn. Another cohort of players will start the next phase of their careers with the event starting at 7 p.m. ET and airing on ESPN.
Who should I know?
Kevin Huerter, SG/SF, 6’7, 19 years old. After playing the Swiss Army knife role at Maryland, Huerter declared without an agent, eventually staying in the draft after being rumored to receive a first round guarantee. An impressive combine performance propelled the 6’7 wing into the first-round conversation, and he decided to forgo the rest of his eligibility. In two seasons, Huerter showcased deadly marksmanship and versatility on both ends. The Clifton Park, New York, native recently had a hand surgery that will keep him out for two months, but he’ll be healthy before the season and it hasn’t deterred teams. He’ll be off the board before long.
Justin Jackson, SF/PF, 6’7, 21 years old. An older prospect for his year, Jackson’s stock plummeted after a rocky start to the season. Expected to build on a freshman season where he shot nearly 44 percent on threes, he instead hit just 25 percent from deep and was shut down after 11 games with a torn shoulder. He underwent surgery in January and will clear the six-month benchmark for contact in July. Jackson has worked out with some teams and displayed his 7’3 wingspan at the combine once again, but left before the combine’s second day. He’ll be hoping a team takes a flier on his upside late in the draft.
What’s their stock look like?
Huerter — stock: through the roof
Jackson — stock: slightly down
How to watch the NBA Draft
Time: 7 p.m. ET
In other news
In what’s been a largely confidential search process, three finalists are reported to have emerged in Maryland’s search for a new athletic director. Temple AD Patrick Kraft is reported to be the frontrunner for the job, with executive and acting AD Damon Evans and former Tennessee AD John Currie also securing interviews.
Maryland hired Walters Incorporated as the consulting group that will oversee the external investigation into Jordan McNair’s death. Players have also been told all regularly scheduled practices will be voluntary until further notice.
More than a thousand people showed up for McNair’s funeral on Wednesday, mourning the loss of the 19-year old, according to The Baltimore Sun.
It’s still Running Backs Week here, and Lorenzo Harrison still looks like the perfect complement to Ty Johnson’s speed.
If you look at the football roster, you could convince yourself that Maryland should be a better team this year. However, a lot of the talent is young, unproven or both, and SB Nation’s Bill Connelly took a deep look at the team’s 2018 prospects.
And Rayshad Lewis hopped on a mixtape with his brother. We’ll have a review soon.
No label no deal no nothing just some youngins with a dream. So much I want to do in this world and I don’t need or want or need anything handed to me so I’ll keep pushing and investing in myself until I’m gone. Go get the tape #SDE #3SidesToEveryStory https://t.co/czD2eyRrDo— Rayshad Lewis (@ThatOtherLewis) June 20, 2018