by Bill DiFilippo

It’s official: Jabari Parker is going pro.

In a exclusive article written for Sports Illustrated today, the superstar Duke forward and SLAM 177 cover star announced that he will forgo his final three years of eligibility and make the jump to the NBA, where he will likely be a top-3 pick in this year’s Draft.

Parker met with Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski yesterday to discuss his future as a pro, and after answering two questions — “Which environment — college or the NBA — offers me the best opportunity to grow as a basketball player?” and “Which environment — college or the NBA — offers me the best opportunity to grow and develop off the court?” — Parker decided to turn pro.

Via Sports Illustrated:

I realize how much of a privilege and an honor it is to join the ranks of the NBA. I will do everything in my power to help deliver championships to the franchise that drafts me. At the same time, I recognize the obligation to represent the league in an admirable way off the court.

Up to this point I haven’t given any thought to agents. But now that I’ve declared, I will turn my attention to the process of choosing someone to represent me. Money was not a factor in my decision to go pro. It won’t be a factor in my choice of an agent. My number one criterion in choosing a college coach was an impeccable reputation for integrity. I’m looking for the same thing in an agent.

This past year at Duke has been a cherished chapter in my life. I’m very fortunate to have worn the blue and white. And I will always carry with me the memories of playing in front of the Crazies at Cameron. Now it’s time to write the next chapter. I can’t wait to get started.

The entire piece is worth a read, as Parker discusses how he wants to make an impact on and off the court as an NBA player. The 2014 Draft will be held on June 26.