Duke’s Parker to decide Wednesday on going pro
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Jabari Parker says he plans to meet with Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski when he returns to Durham, N.C., on Tuesday, and he will decide Wednesday whether to declare for the NBA draft or return to college for his sophomore year.
The All-American was in Oklahoma City with his parents to accept the Wayman Tisdale Award as college basketball’s top freshman. He says his decision will be based on where he can grow the most.
”I don’t know where that is right now,” Parker said. ”I’ll talk to coach about it and lay out my options, but I’m just really glad I get the best of both worlds.”
Parker was the highest-scoring freshman in Duke history (19.1 per game) and is the first freshman to lead the Blue Devils in scoring and rebounding.
The draft is June 26.
Kansas coach Bill Self was also honored at the event with the Wayman Tisdale Humanitarian Award and he talked from experience about the decision Parker is facing. Self recently had two freshmen, Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid, declare for the draft and last season had a one-and-done player in Ben McLemore.
”I hope that Coach K’s meeting goes better than my meeting went with Joel and Ben. Wiggins, we knew he was gone before we even got him,” said Self. ”Jabari, I had a chance to recruit him and he’s obviously a special talent and great human being. But the way it’s set up, it makes it very difficult for these kids to come back. He’ll make a great decision whatever it is.”
Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall, whose team won their first 35 games this season before losing to eventual national runner-up Kentucky in the NCAA tournament, received the Henry Iba Award as the coach of the year.
Creighton’s Doug McDermott, accompanied by his coach and father, Greg, picked up the Oscar Robertson Award as the nation’s top player.