It has been considered “likely” for weeks that Indiana Hoosiers freshman forward Noah Vonleh would enter the 2014 NBA Draft, and now, there is a direct report that he will declare.
Gary Parrish of CBS Sports reports that Vonleh indicated to him directly that he would declare for the Draft, and Parrish lends some insight into the decision.
NBA sources have told CBSSports.com that he’s guaranteed to go in the lottery, and that the top five of the draft is a possibility.
“I’ve heard the fourth pick to the 12th pick is wide open,” Vonleh said. “[I think I'll be selected] anywhere in that range.”
Frankly, it makes way too much sense for Vonleh to declare, and this seems to be the right move for the versatile forward. He is currently the #8 player on Chad Ford’s Big Board at ESPN, and DraftExpress currently places him 7th in their latest mock draft, which has him heading to Utah to pair up with 2013 lottery pick Trey Burke and company.
Vonleh’s college stats of 11 points and 9 rebounds per game don’t exactly jump off the page, but he is the typical player who would seem to excel at the next level given his length (6-foot-10 with a 7-foot-4 wingspan) and athleticism coupled with an already formed motor as an 18-year-old. There are certain people who are enamored with Vonleh to the point where he could be a top-5 pick, and with Marcus Smart (and many others) as a case study, he would be wise to jump after his freshman season.