NCAA Basketball: Big Ten Conference Tournament Second Round - Iowa vs Ohio State

Kris Murray announced Friday that he is declaring for the 2023 NBA Draft after taking a major leap in production during his junior season at Iowa. Murray earned first-team All-Big Ten honors while leading the Hawkeyes in scoring at 20.2 points per game.

A versatile forward with a fluid offensive game and left-handed shooting stroke, Murray also led Iowa in rebounding at 7.9 boards per game. At 6-foot-8, he has the versatile frame needed to excel at the next level. His declaration for the draft comes one year after his twin brother, Keegan Murray, parlayed a big season at Iowa into being selected No. 4 overall.

With Keegan departed, Iowa coach Fran McCaffery turned to Kris to be the Hawkeyes' offensive engine in the 2022-23 season, and he delivered. Murray reached or surpassed 20 points in 15 of 29 games, and the Hawkeyes went 9-2 when Murray scored 24 or more points. The former three-star prospect played roughly twice as many minutes per game this past season than in the 2021-22 campaign and more than doubled his point production while also collecting one steal and 1.2 blocks per game.

Kris Murray's NBA Draft projection

Murray ranks No. 15 in the 2023 NBA Draft Prospect Rankings from CBS Sports. He went No. 18 in a recent mock draft from Kyle Boone and landed at No. 21 in Gary Parrish's most recent mock draft.

It helps Murray's case that his twin, Keegan, is starting and playing reliable basketball for a playoff-caliber Sacramento Kings team. Since Kris will already be 23 when the 2023-24 NBA season begins, franchises will want him to be a contributor early in his career. While they are not identical players, the twins do have similar frames and games.

"Murray's twin brother (Keegan Murray) developed into a top-five pick at Iowa," Parrish wrote. "This Murray won't quite do that but has still shown enough as a versatile two-way player to be selected in this draft."

Impact on Iowa

After three seasons with at least one of the Murray twins in the program, Iowa will be turning over a new leaf in the 2023-24 season. With second-leading scorer Filip Rebraca out of eligibility, McCaffery will have to seek out new sources of offense in his high-powered attack.

Key player such as Tony Perkins, Payton Sandfort and Patrick McCaffery all have eligibility left and each have solid records of production that should help keep the Hawkeyes relevant in the Big Ten and competing for an NCAA Tournament bid.