There is perhaps no date on the men’s college basketball offseason calendar more important than June 1: the deadline for players to withdraw from the NBA draft and maintain their college eligibility. Season-changing decisions are looming as college coaches hold their breath waiting for the final word on whether their stars will be back for one more year.
Of course, not all high-profile decisions are made at the 11th hour. Stars like defending National Player of the Year Oscar Tshiebwe (Kentucky), Armando Bacot (North Carolina) and Hunter Dickinson (Michigan) have announced their returns to school well in advance of the June 1 deadline, while others like Christian Braun (Kansas) and Jaylin Williams (Arkansas) have finalized plans to stay in the draft recently. But with key names like Marcus Sasser (Houston), Jalen Wilson (Kansas), Trevor Keels (Duke), Drew Timme (Gonzaga) and many more who entered Wednesday still undecided, the race until 11:59 p.m. ET is sure to be riveting.
Sports Illustrated will be reacting all day to the most consequential stay-or-go decisions in this live blog, which will be updated as the announcements come in.
NBA draft deadline live blog
Drew Timme: Timme joined the likes of Hunter Dickinson, Oscar Tshiebwe, Trayce Jackson-Davis and Armando Bacot—True centers with questionable pro stock who are coming back for another season of college hoops. Timme’s decision came with less than an hour to go until the deadline, but his return back to school gives Gonzaga a real chance to be the best team in college basketball in 2022–23. With Julian Strawther and Rasir Bolton both taking their names out of the draft and more reinforcements potentially on the way, the Bulldogs will be loaded yet again.
Trevor Keels: Keels’s decision could have gone either way for a number of reasons, namely the fact that he’s not a guaranteed first-round pick and he’s one of the younger prospects in this draft. Despite that, the burly guard decided to keep his name in the draft, meaning the Blue Devils lose four starters from last year’s team. The biggest concern for Duke in Jon Scheyer’s first year is a lack of shooting, with freshmen Mark Mitchell and Dariq Whitehead now in for even bigger roles right away and Scheyer forced to play more two-big looks. That said, Duke could be active with remaining available transfers like Courtney Ramey (Texas) and Jacob Grandison (Illinois) to fill that shooting void.
Marcus Sasser: The star guard for Houston is heading back to school for one more year. It’s huge news for the Cougars, who should be among the five best teams in the sport. Sasser spent much of this past season sidelined with a foot injury, but was able to rebuild some of his draft stock during combine week and his choice between staying and going became far more of a toss-up. He’s one of the best shooters in the country, looked improved running a team during the combine and has experience at the highest level playing in the 2021 Final Four. Pencil Sasser in as a preseason All-American.
AJ Green: An accomplished scorer from his time at Northern Iowa, Green was considering transferring to Iowa State or Duke but has decided to stay in the draft instead. It’s a blow for both programs, namely the Cyclones, who most in the industry believed had a leg up in the star guard’s recruitment thanks to the presence of his father Kyle on staff in Ames.
Caleb Houstan: This move has been expected ever since the Canadian wing declined his invite to the combine in May, but Houstan made official his intent to stay in the draft rather than return to Ann Arbor for his sophomore season with Michigan. Houstan had an uneven season with the Wolverines in 2021–22, struggling to impact the game beyond his ability to shoot the three. Still, his pro appeal thanks to his size and catch-and-shoot ability is obvious. The departures of Houstan and Moussa Diabate leave Michigan lacking depth, particularly on the wing.
Jalen Wilson: Kansas needed some good news after Christian Braun kept his name in the draft and got it from Wilson, the starting power forward on the Jayhawks’ national title team. Wilson played his way into the draft conversation after performing well at the G League Elite Camp and main combine, but he still has plenty to gain from going back to school. He’ll be the leading scorer and the face of the defending champs with Braun and Ochai Agbaji departing, and a clear preseason all-conference selection on a top-10 team.
David Roddy: The Colorado State star’s decision was one of the more impactful to watch heading into decision day. A return would have made the Rams a likely top-25 team thanks to the presence of Roddy and star point guard Isaiah Stevens, but the versatile forward elected to keep his name in the draft. Roddy profiles as a likely early second-round pick, though struggles shooting the ball at the NBA combine kept the door open for a return to CSU. Stevens is a likely preseason Bob Cousy Award nominee, but without Roddy it’s hard to see the Rams making a legit run at the Mountain West title.
Julian Strawther: After a strong sophomore season in Spokane in which he averaged nearly 12 points and shot 37% from distance, Strawther spurned NBA suitors for a third year with Mark Few and the Zags. The smooth wing’s three-and-D potential made him an intriguing potential pro, and he earned a combine invitation because of that. In the end, the chance for a featured role on a Gonzaga team that should be in the top five nationally if Drew Timme returns won out, and a strong year could propel Strawther into the first round of the 2023 draft.
Will Richardson: A four-year contributor for Oregon, Richardson is headed back to school for his extra year of eligibility and is taking his name out of the draft. He’ll headline a retooled backcourt for the Ducks that will feature transfers Jermaine Couisnard (South Carolina) and Keeshawn Barthelemy (Colorado) along with freshman Dior Johnson and high-scoring JUCO important Tyrone Williams. Add in five-star freshman center Kel’el Ware in the frontcourt, and this is an Oregon team that should be back in the top 25 after missing the NCAA tournament last season.
Dereon Seabron: Kevin Keatts is trying to bounce back from a disastrous 4–16 ACC finish in 2021–22, but he’ll have to do it without Seabron, who led the Wolfpack in points, rebounds, assists and steals this past season. Seabron flashed his versatile skill set at the combine in May and was one of the better players in the scrimmages, and that was enough for the sophomore to forgo his remaining eligibility. The draft deadline didn’t only produce bad news for NC State, which got talented freshman and potential first-round pick Terquavion Smith back for a second season in Raleigh Tuesday. Still, it’s much harder to see the Pack making a push for the NCAA tournament without Seabron.
Moussa Diabate: Getting Hunter Dickinson back makes this offseason a win for Michigan, but officially losing talented big man Diabate to the pro ranks does sting. Diabate’s elite physical tools and high motor made him one of the more productive freshman bigs in the sport in 2021–22, and he possesses considerable upside that he’s just starting to tap into. But with Dickinson taking up most of the minutes at the five, it’s understandable for Diabate to prefer developing inside an NBA system.
Deandre Williams: Memphis is officially getting the skilled forward back for one more year. This decision was seemingly less about draft stock (Williams wouldn’t have been a likely NBA selection) and more about moving on in life. Williams is already 25 years old and will turn 26 in October, making him perhaps the oldest player in the sport next season. He’s a proven starting-caliber frontcourt player capable of playing either power forward or center, and he should be dangerous in ball screens with SMU transfer Kendric Davis.
Isaiah Wong: Miami got good news Wednesday morning with the official return of talented scoring guard Wong, who averaged more than 15 points, 4.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game this past season on a Hurricanes team that went all the way to the Elite Eight. This was an expected move given that Wong wasn’t likely to get drafted, but the Canes star did stir up some drama this offseason when his agent suggested Wong would hit the transfer portal if he didn’t receive better name, image and likeness (NIL) compensation. But all’s well that ends well, and Miami has to be thrilled to get back Wong and forward Jordan Miller to go with high-profile transfers Nijel Pack (Kansas State) and Norchad Omier (Arkansas State).
Justin Lewis: Lewis was one of college basketball’s breakout stars in 2021–22, bursting onto the scene to lead Marquette to the NCAA tournament in Shaka Smart’s first season at the helm. At No. 36 in Jeremy Woo’s latest mock draft, the skilled forward has a very good chance of getting guaranteed money, and fewer and fewer prospects are turning down those opportunities these days. His departure is without question a blow for the Golden Eagles, who also lose Darryl Morsell to graduation this spring. Just one player who appeared in a game under Steve Wojciechowski remains with Marquette just over one year since his dismissal: forward Oso Ighodaro. Grad transfer Zach Wrightsil (NAIA Loyola New Orleans) will be key in helping fill the void left by Lewis.
Dalen Terry: The Arizona wing announced Tuesday night his plans to stay in the NBA draft, forgoing his remaining college eligibility. Terry thrived as a glue guy on an Arizona team that earned a No. 1 seed in Tommy Lloyd’s first season, and the versatile guard would have played a huge role for the 2022–23 Wildcats. But Terry’s game fits well in the modern NBA if he can knock down enough threes, and his energy level and competitiveness stood out throughout the interview process with teams at the combine. His departure leaves Arizona very thin on the wing for next season.
Shaedon Sharpe: The Sharpe saga in Lexington finally came to an end Tuesday when the projected top-10 pick officially announced he wouldn’t return to Kentucky next season. It’s a move that has been widely expected since Sharpe, who joined the Wildcats midseason after reclassifying, officially became eligible for the 2022 draft, but he had kept the door open to a return throughout the process. Kentucky’s roster has plenty of talent even without the former five-star, but his addition would have brought even more upside to a roster that also includes Tshiebwe, starting point guard Sahvir Wheeler and five-star recruits Chris Livingston and Cason Wallace.
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