Kentucky freshman forward James Young will declare for the NBA draft, the school announced Thursday.
Young will join teammate Julius Randle in the draft. The 6-foot-6 guard/forward hybrid averaged 14.3 points per game this season, second on the team after Randle. Young led the Wildcats with 82 three-pointers, shooting 34.9% from behind the arc. He was named to the All-SEC Second Team.
His play in the Final Four, when he averaged 18.5 points and 6.0 rebounds, likely boosted his draft stock.
SI.com's Chris Mannix ranks Young 14th overall on his latest big board. From Mannix's scouting report:
"Young is erratic, and his defense is weaker than that of [Gary] Harris, one of his primary rivals on the two-guard depth chart. But when he's on -- like he was in a 13-point, eight-rebound performance against Wichita State -- he's dangerous. Young has tinkered with his shooting technique through the season, and though it isn't flawless, it's improved. With solid size, Young has the potential to become a solid starter."Young and Randle could be joined in the draft by teammates Aaron Harrison, Andrew Harrison, Alex Poythress and Dakari Johnson, all of whom are still undecided. Center Willie Cauley-Stein has already announced that he will return to Kentucky for his junior season.