NCAA moves withdrawal deadline for NBA Draft to after combine

The NCAA has decided to reform the way college basketball players enter the NBA Draft. 

The governing body announced on Wednesday that the NCAA has pushed back the date with which student-athletes must remove their name from the NBA Draft to 10 days after the final day of the NBA Combine, as well as announced that student-athletes may enter the draft multiple times without penalty. 

“The rule is a good idea because it provides men’s basketball student-athletes the opportunity to test their dream of going beyond the stage of amateurism into the professional level without completely sacrificing their collegiate career, should they find they are not as prepared as they had hoped for the next level,” said Cody McDavis, a member of the Division I Men’s Basketball Oversight Committee.

This decision is a pretty big departure from previous years on multiple fronts. Last season, the NCAA forced student-athletes to make their decision by April 16 in order to maintain their college eligibility. That date was actually before the day that the NBA forced players to make a decision by, which is 60 days prior to the NBA Draft (in 2015, this fell on April 26). This season, the date will be May 25, as the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago ends on May 15. 

It's also a major departure from the recent past in regard to frequency of entrance into the NBA Draft. Previously, NCAA by-laws stated that a player who declared for the draft twice would lose collegiate eligibility. This announcement means it it will allow NCAA players to work out in the combine and be afforded at least one tryout per NBA team is also pretty important, as that will allow early-entrant student-athletes more time to gather information about their draft stocks.

And really, that's what this decision is all about: helping student-athletes make the most informed decision that they can for their professional careers by gathering information. It'll be interesting to see what the effect of this decision is moving forward. 

“This legislation, with help from the NBA, will allow student-athletes the opportunity to make informed decisions on their true status as a draft prospect before forfeiting their collegiate eligibility,” Bill Self said in the NCAA's release.

West Virginia Mountaineers (USATSI)
A new rule in the NCAA will allow players to withdraw from the NBA Draft after declaring. (USATSI)
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