The Memphis Tigers that went to the Elite 8 this year may be taking a Howitzer to the starting lineup. Freshman Shawne Williams and sophmore Darius Washington will both enter the June NBA draft. At a Tiger fundraiser this evening at the Bank of Bartlett at Wolfhcase, head coach John Calipari said both players will declare for the draft but will probably not hire agents. That means if they feel their stock is not high enough in the weeks leading up to the draft, they can withdraw their names and return to college.
"They both want to feel the water and see where they are are. I support both of them. I think both of them are terrific players. Rodney Carney is going to be a top 10 draft pick. Nothing would make me happier than for all three of them to go in the first round."
Underclassmen without agents, can withdraw their names by June 18th and return to college. Williams, the 2006 Conference USA Freshman of the year, averaged 13 points and 6 rebounds per game for the Tigers this year. Washington, the 2005 C-USA freshman of the year, averaged 13 points and 3 assists. He posted his NBA intentions on his website this afternoon.
"It is with a great deal of excitement that I announce my decision to declare for the 2006 NBA Draft. Playing in the NBA has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember."
The NBA draft is scheduled for June 28th.