Ochai Agbaji declares for the NBA Draft

Junior guard Ochai Agbaji drives the ball. Kansas defeated Eastern Washington 93-84 for the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

Kansas men's basketball junior guard Ochai Agbaji announced Thursday that he will be entering his name in the 2021 NBA Draft, while maintaining his NCAA eligibility. 

“I will be keeping my NCAA eligibility throughout this process and look forward to hearing from NBA professionals on ways I can improve my game,” Agbaji said in a press release Thursday. “This is a great opportunity as I work towards my goal of being a professional basketball player.”

Agbaji, a 6-foot-5, 210-pound shooting guard out of Kansas City, Missouri, led the Jayhawks in scoring with 14.1 points per game during the 2020-21 season. 

He also averaged 3.7 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.1 steals per game, while shooting 42 percent from the field and 37.7 percent from three-point range. 

“Ochai and I talked a lot about his basketball future over the past couple of weeks so he could determine what was best for he and his family moving forward,” Kansas coach Bill Self said in the release. “After thinking that through, he made the decision to enter the NBA Draft. He clearly has a skill set that translates well to the professional game, and the NBA draft process will be a great opportunity for him to be evaluated."

Self said that Abaji plans on signing with an agent but will follow the guidelines set by the NCAA and NBA to conserve his collegiate eligibility. 

"Och will be able to gain great insight on what areas he needs to work on which could improve his draft stock," Self said. "I know that will be beneficial for him this year before he decides whether he should come back or remain in the NBA Draft process.”

KU has already seen a number of roster changes this offseason with junior guard Tyon-Grant Fostersophomore forward Tristan Enarunafreshman forward Gethro Muscadin and freshman guard Latrell Jossell entering the NCAA transfer portal.

However, Kansas has also seen some key additions this offseason in 2021 point guard Bobby Pettiford Jr., Division II transfer forward Cam Martin and Drake transfer guard Joseph Yesufu.

If Agbaji decides to keep his name in the NBA Draft, this will put KU's scholarship numbers at 11, leaving room for another addition. 

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