As expected, Arkansas redshirt junior forward Marshawn Powell has announced that he will forego his final season of college basketball and turned professional.
Powell made the decision known via his twitter account:
"@MarshawnPowell: decided that im entering the 2013#NBAdraft thank God for even being in this position"
Powell will put his name in the NBA draft, but also knows that he will have plenty of opportunities to play overseas if he is not selected in one of the two rounds.
Powell averaged 14.5 points – second on the team – and a team-best 5.4 rebounds while garnering second team All-SEC honors from the league's coaches.
That was a major bounce back effort from Powell, a 23-year-old who suffered three major injuries while playing for the Razorbacks.
One of those was torn ligaments in a practice in North Little Rock just two games into the 2011-2012 that cost him the rest of the season.
He would play in all 32 of Arkansas' games this season, starting all but the regular season finale.
"I wish Marshawn all the best as he moves on to the next stage of his basketball career," Arkansas coach Mike Anderson said in a press release Tuesday. "He had a tremendous junior season after recovering from a knee injury and was a big part of the success that we had this season. He is a skilled forward who can stretch the defense because of his ability to shoot. He can also create by putting it on the floor and has a nice post up game. I feel that his best basketball is in front of him."
Powell was able to add more of a three-point element during his year of sitting out and that resulted in shooting 34,6 percent from 3-point range this season.
That was a vast improvement from his two other full seasons in which he shot 21.6 percent as a freshman and 25 percent as a sophomore from 3-point range.
"Being out last season with the injury allowed me to work a lot on my shooting," Powell said. "That was the big addition to my game."
He was happy with his selection to the second-team All-SEC.
"It's a big deal," Powell said. "It is a big deal to have my game be recognized by league-wide coaches."
Powell averaged 14.9 points in his first season at Arkansas and was on the All-SEC freshman team along with Kentucky's trio of John Wall , Eric Bledsoe and DeMarcus Cousins, Alabama's Tony Mitchell and current Ole Miss senior Reggie Buckner.
He dipped to averaging 10.8 points as a sophomore and was averaging 19.5 points and six rebounds in his two games in the 2011-2012 season.
Powell also is one of just five Razorback players to score over 1,000 points, grab 450 rebounds, dish out 100 assists and block 75 blocked shots in his career.
The others were former Razorbacks Todd Day, Scott Hastings, Ron Huery and Corliss Williamson.
Powell could take his name out of the NBA draft by April 16th if he chose to do, but sources indicate he is expected to hire an agent and play professionally overseas in the NBA does't work out. He has not yet hired an agent, however, according to the release.
Powell's departure means that Arkansas currently has 13 scholarships allotted for current players and its two fall signees.
Those are 6-10 McDonald's All-American Bobby Portis of Little Rock Hall and 6-10 Nigerian-born Moses Kingsley, a top 40 nationally-ranked player who played last season at Huntington (WV) Prep.
Speculation is that Arkansas sophomore guard B.J. Young is also planning to turn professional.
Powell Turning Pro
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