The report today that Yogi Ferrell will make his announcement April 25 at a restaurant in Indianapolis as to whether or not he will turn pro is an interesting one.
At first glance, one would think he’s probably gone. How many people plan private gatherings for family and friends 12 days early to say they’re staying in school?
That part strikes me as a little odd.
The announcement also comes on the eve of the last day to declare for the NBA Draft. By waiting until the last possible moment, he will have a really good idea of exactly where he could potentially fit into the mix.
That said, the immediate reaction is to wonder if Ferrell is truly ready to play in the NBA?
Myself, I would say no. But does that necessarily mean he should stay at Indiana another season? I go back and forth on that one.
Here’s the thing with Yogi. He’s had a great IU career. He was first team all-Big Ten last season and he has scored nearly 1,400 points for the Hoosiers. If he were to stay, he would very likely become just the sixth player in Indiana history to score more than 2,000 points in his career. With 1,379 points he already ranks 22nd all-time in history.
In many ways he has been everything an IU fan has wanted from one of its top players. He was a successful high school kid IN INDIANA who chose to play his college basketball AT INDIANA. He has proudly wore those candy striped warmups for three years.
By taking summer classes every year he has also positioned himself to graduate from IU this summer.
So perhaps he just wonders how much one more year in school is really going to help him moving forward? And I think that’s a difficult question to answer. What would Yogi have to do for his NBA draft stock to escalate? He has always been a good floor general, he has shown he can hit the perimeter shot and he has a good vision as a passer.
He could definitely be more consistent and could always do more on the defensive end. But are those reasons enough to stick around for another year and play college basketball? Again, it’s a hard question to answer.
But here’s the $64,000 question:
If you were 22 years old, had the earning potential to leave college after your junior year, with your degree in hand, and make a six-figure salary, do you think you could look the other way and easily make the decision to return for your senior year of college?
I don’t think that trip to Maui to play in the Maui Invitational next fall is likely going to weigh heavily into his decision.
Will he get selected in the NBA Draft? That’s hard to say. If he did, I would think in the mid to late second round. I’ve seen one draft board where he was listed as the No. 88 player overall. I saw another one where three people had mock drafts and Yogi went either No. 44, 45 or 46 in the second round of the draft.
If he didn’t get selected, I’m guessing he could make a comfortable living playing basketball in Europe or bouncing around the NBA D League for a while.
The one thing I’ve learned though is to never bet against Yogi. He has always beaten the odds. And as IU fans, he has always found ways to surprise you in the things he can do on a basketball court. Bottom line is he has done great things for IU for three years and deserves the support of Hoosier fans in the decision he makes. He has earned that much.
What will he ultimately decide to do? Again, it seems odd that he would be having a get together with family and friends to announce he’s staying in school but I guess that’s always a possibility, too. Maybe he
If he stays, Indiana should be a top 15 ranked team going into next season. If he goes, the Hoosiers will still be good they’ll just have to find a different identity. It won’t be ‘Yogi’s team’ like it has been the last few years.
My selfish opinion remains that it would be great to see him play in an IU uniform one more year. But if he leaves I actually could understand why he would do that as well.
We’ll all know a lot more in 12 days.