After several weeks of speculation, Ohio State guard D’Angelo Russell officially announced that he will forego his final three years of eligibility and enter the 2015 NBA Draft.
Russell was arguably the best guard in college basketball this year, as he was named a consensus All-American and the 2015 Big Ten Freshman of the Year. The Kentucky native was second in the Big Ten in scoring and third in assists, as he averaged 19.3 points and 5.1 dimes per game. He also pulled down 5.7 rebounds per game, which led the Buckeyes. ESPN’s Chad Ford has Russell as the No. 4 overall player in the Draft.
Ohio State freshman D’Angelo Russell has decided to go pro, declaring for the NBA draft Wednesday.
“This was a hard decision because I knew I could come back and play with my teammates who I love, and to be coached by coach Thad Matta again would have been awesome, but at the same time I wanted to pursue my dream of playing in the NBA,” Russell told ESPN.com on Wednesday. “I know what I am capable of and the sky’s the limit with effort. I know I have a lot to work on.”
Russell is a 6-foot-5 combo guard who excels both as a playmaker and as a scoring threat. He produced 19.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game as a freshman for the Buckeyes.
Just one year after entering college basketball as the No. 13 overall player in the ESPN 100, Russell is bound for the pros.
“You never know when this opportunity comes,” he told ESPN.com. “I believe I am ready because my approach was to unpack my bags, get committed to winning and listening to the coaches — as opposed to coming in and saying ‘I am a pro’ and trying to leave. I wasn’t trying to get in and out at Ohio State.”