Washington declares without agent

FAYETTEVILLE – Arkansas forward Michael Washington has put his name in for the NBA Draft, but he has not signed with an agent. That keeps open the possibility of returning for his senior year.

The university released a statement Friday afternoon revealing Washington's decision.

"Michael has put his name in the draft to test the waters, but he is not hiring an agent," Arkansas coach John Pelphrey said in the statement. "We will continue to work with Michael to help make certain he has the best information available and makes an informed decision regarding his future. He is working out and continuing to work hard in school to finish the semester strong."

Washington, the first Arkansas player to lead the SEC in rebounding since 1999, averaged 15.5 points and 9.8 boards this season for the 14-16 Razorbacks. He also ranked third in the SEC with a 55.1 field goal percentage.

By declaring the way he did, Washington can work out for NBA teams and get an idea of where he may, or may not, get drafted — without jeopardizing his eligibility.

Back on March 23, Pelphrey said he would support Washington leaving Arkansas if he believed he would be drafted in the first round of the draft. ESPN.com ranks him at No. 55 on its list of prospects for this summer's draft.

"My sense has been is that if he can be a first-round draft pick, that's one thing," Pelphrey said at the time. "But if not, come back and let's work and see if we can't develop into that."

The deadline for underclassmen to remove their names from the draft is 4 p.m. on June 15.

The 2009 NBA Draft takes place on June 25 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

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