Ford Anxiously Awaiting Draft

Sharrod Ford has been waiting for this moment his entire basketball-playing life.

But for now, the former star Clemson basketball player is just hoping Tuesday night's NBA draft turns out to be a happy ending.

"There's definitely been a lot of nervousness because you just don't know what's going to happen," Ford said. "You just don't know what to expect. So many things change. One person could tell you one thing and that could change with the next person. So, it's definitely nerve-racking."

The last month or so has been a whirlwind-type tour for Ford.

He's worked out at the pre-draft camps in Chicago, as well as about 10 teams throughout the NBA, which included Atlanta, Detroit, Portland, Seattle, Utah, Phoenix, New Jersey and the Los Angeles Clippers.

"I've been doing great in the workouts," he said. "I've been having some pretty good workouts."

During those workouts, Ford said that not a single team indicated if or when it might select him.

"I think some people kind of get it twisted with teams telling them that they are going to take them," he said. "I think some guys do it just get hype. The feedback I've been getting is they really like my athletic ability, the way I can run the court, they like how skilled I am, but I don't think there are real guarantees until they call your name, so I'm not going to really bank on anything like that."

The question surrounding Ford is whether or not he'll be selected toward the end of the first round, where players are given guaranteed contracts, or if he'll fall to the second round, where players have to fight to make a team.

Famous and well respected NBA scout Marty Blake says it's not an easy call to make with Ford.

"With him, it's going to be the old cliché, 'it's beauty in the eye of the beholder' with such a deep draft," Blake said. "I don't see him going in the first, with international kids and with it being a deep draft in guards. Is he a guy that can make a team and help a team? We don't know. And when you don't have that decisive answer, it's going to be difficult to give him that first round selection. Again, it only takes one team to pick him.

"When does he need to step up? He needs to step up all the time. Can he do it consistently? Sometimes he didn't show that. But he definitely has a lot of positive skills -- athleticism and basketball knowledge. And where a team is going to gauge that is whenever a team meets in their war room."

But Ford thinks teams should realize that he's going to continue to improve with his skills, just as he has from the was a freshman to when he played his last game as a senior.

In fact, as a senior, he averaged a career high 14.9 points and 8.2 rebounds a game, and he was also named as a third team All-ACC performer.

"I think since I've stepped into the door at Clemson, I've come a long way, especially since my freshman year," Ford added. "I think it just came from a lot of hard work and being determined in what I wanted to do. I set goals for myself and I had to reach those goals and I knew it was going to take a lot of hard work for me to reach those goals."

Come sometime Tuesday night, when he hears his name called, some of those long-awaited goals will finally come true, which will then make room for a new set of goals.

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