Once ranked five-star recruit and the No. 2 point guard in the country — behind Kentucky's Marquis Teague, who left school after his freshman year to be selected in the first round — Myck Kabongo entered Texas as a heralded, and likely one-and-done recruit.
But Kabongo didn't show the kind of game that enticed the NBA scouts during his freshman year, and elected to return to Texas for his sophomore season to improve his stock. Ironically enough, a workout designed to help improve his game for the league might have cost his NBA standing even further. Kabongo took a trip to Cleveland in May following his freshman season, where he was worked out by Jerry Powell, a professional trainer.
But the NCAA ruled that Kabongo had received impermissible benefits from agent Rich Paul — the agent for former Longhorns Tristan Thompson and Cory Joseph — then provided false statements, leading to Kabongo having to funnel $475, the cost of the benefits, to the charity of his choice. The cost to Kabongo wound up being a lot more. The NCAA suspended Kabongo for 23 games, leaving him just 11 contests to prove that his game had improved.
Considered a late-first, early-second-round pick coming out of his freshman year, Kabongo scored 14.6 points per game, dished out 5.5 assists per game and swiped two steals per contest, all top marks on the Longhorns. Additionally, the 6-foot-3 Kabongo grabbed 5.0 rebounds per game, good for second-best on the team. He continued to show potential as a pick-and-roll player, often getting to the rim and drawing contact. In fact, he drew 5.7 fouls per 40 minutes and earned free throws on a whopping 70 percent of his field goal attempts. Had he played a full season, that would have tied him for 31st best in the country last season.
But the NBA has often been called a shooter's league, and Kabongo failed to demonstrate that he could knock down the open look. While he made 60 percent of his attempts at the rim, according to Hoop-math.com, Kabongo was considerably less accurate on his other attempts, shooting just 12 percent on two-point jumpers and making less than 30 percent of his three-pointers. Kabongo also continued to show issues with his decision-making at times, finishing with a turnover rate of 22.5 percent.
Kabongo will likely make someone's summer league team, and don't be surprised if he makes it to someone's camp. With his size, speed and length — he had a better than 6-6 wingspan — he could project as a player capable of running the team off the bench for stretches while playing solid defense. But he'll probably
The fact that Kabongo wasn't drafted wasn't a huge surprise, given that most had him projected as a late second-round pick. NBADraft.net predicted that Kabongo would be selected at the No. 48 pick, with DraftExpress.com listing him as the No. 58 selection. There are 60 picks in the NBA Draft.
In all, only four Big 12 players were drafted — Kansas guard Ben McLemore, Kansas center Jeff Withey, Baylor guard Pierre Jackson and Oklahoma forward Romero Osby. McLemore and Withey were first-round selections.