MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Oscar Tshiebwe is going to test the NBA’s draft waters after all.
The talented West Virginia freshman power forward announced Wednesday evening that he will enter his name into the NBA Draft, but will keep open the possibility of returning to the Mountaineers next season.
— Big O (@Oscartshiebwe34) April 8, 2020
Recent changes to the draft process allow college players to work out for NBA teams and get feedback on where they stand before deciding whether or not to stay in the draft. NBA executives grade the prospects on a scale of lottery pick to undrafted, then provide that feedback to the player and their college coach.
Players are allowed to temporarily sign with NBPA certified agents to help navigate that process.
This year’s deadline to make that decision is currently scheduled for June 3, but it seems probable that will be pushed back to a later date with the league’s operation currently suspended as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bob Huggins recently told CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein that he expects Tshiebwe and Derek Culver to return to WVU next season. Depending on the feedback Tshiebwe receives, that may very well still be the case.
“Per NCAA rules, in order to gain feedback from people associated with the NBA, players are required to submit the necessary paperwork to request an evaluation,” Huggins said in a WVU release. “Oscar plans to do this while leaving open his option to return.”
As a freshman, Tshiebwe was second in the Big 12 to player of the year Udoka Azubuike in rebounding, averaging 9.3 rebounds per game. He also led the Mountaineers in scoring with 11.2 points per game.