Bloomington, Ind. – Kelvin Sampson not only expects D.J. White to test the NBA waters, he's encouraging it.
The Hoosiers' 6-9, 251-pound junior forward has until 11:59 p.m. April 29 to enter his name as a potential early entrant into the NBA Draft. By doing so, White can participate in a handful of pre-draft camps which will provide him and his family with a better idea of exactly where he might be selected in the June 28th NBA Draft.
First-year Hoosier coach Kelvin Sampson thinks it's the right thing for the Hoosiers' leading scorer and rebounder to do.
"I think D.J. would be doing himself an injustice if he didn't at least find out where his value is," Sampson said Thursday. "We've encouraged him to do that, and I think he will."
If White does in fact declare, his IU career isn't necessarily over. So long as he doesn't sign with an agent, he'll have until June 18th to pull his name out of the draft and return to Bloomington for the 2007-08 season.
But Sampson thinks by declaring, White can get a better feel for what NBA general managers think about him. In addition to playing in the pre-draft camps, Sampson said NBA general managers will also conduct a mock draft once the early entry deadline passes to give players even more information on their stock.
Whenever White does decide to turn pro, Sampson says he should be a player who goes early.
"D.J., for sure, could be in the first round or a high pick," Sampson said. "If he felt like that was what he would want to do, I'd support him 100 percent."
Despite his team-best totals of 13.8 points and 7.3 rebounds, some have questioned whether White is ready for the pro ranks just yet. But Sampson says being ready isn't necessarily what NBA general managers look at when making their draft selections.
"The last time I checked, the NBA drafts on potential," Sampson said. "Whether you're ready or not has very little to do with the way they draft. I could name 50 kids in the last five years that weren't ready to make the jump. But that's not a factor in their equation."
One draft site – NBADraft.net – has White being the second pick in the second round, No. 32 overall.
Sampson: White Should Test NBA Waters
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