Oregon freshman center Bol Bol reportedly to declare for NBA draft

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After nine games of college basketball — where he averaged 21 points, 9.8 rebounds, and 2.7 blocked shots a game — and a season that ended early because of foot surgery, Oregon freshman center Bol Bol is headed to the NBA Draft.

That’s not a surprise, but ESPN’s Nick DePaula broke the news.

Oregon Ducks freshman Bol Bol has decided to turn pro, agreeing to hire an agent at CAA for representation in his eventual NBA career, the agency told ESPN on Friday.

If he hires an agent there is no backing out. Not that Bol was going to anyway, he was always one-and-done.

Bol Bol, the son of former NBA player Manute Bol, is tantalizing with his potential, particularly on the defensive end as a rim protector. He’s 7’2″ with a long wingspan (his father’s was 7’7″), he moves reasonably well around the rim and anticipates well as a shot blocker. Offensively, Bol shows some skill, including a decent shooting touch around the rim and good form on his jumper. He’s thin and needs to a lot more strength to add to hold his ground in the paint in the NBA.

Despite the potential, scouts I talked to see him falling down draft boards because he is a big who had to have major foot surgery already — he only played nine games at Oregon because of a Navicular bone fracture in his left foot — plus there are questions about how much he actually loves the game and will be willing to put in the work it would take to become a valuable NBA player. There are other concerns, but those two trumped everything else. Every one of the people I talked to said something along the lines of “a team will fall in love with the potential and take him near the end of the lottery” but then insisted it would not be their team.

However, as a likely first-round pick it makes sense for Bol to come out and enter the draft, it will just be interesting to see where he goes.