Michigan Wolverines center Hunter Dickinson surprised some people this week when he declared for the 2021 NBA Draft, although the door was left open for a return. The soon-to-be sophomore center plans to hire an NCAA-certified agent to retain his college eligibility.
This means that Dickinson can go through the process and chat with NBA teams about his standing before making a final determination on if he will stay in the draft or not. Dickinson discussed his decision with Big Ten Network’s Andy Katz in his first interview since making his declaration.
.@H_Dickinson24 announced this week he's entering the NBA Draft.— Michigan On BTN (@MichiganOnBTN) May 28, 2021
But "the window's definitely open" to returning to @umichbball, as he explains to @TheAndyKatz.
Full interview, including what Draft feedback he's searching for➡️ https://t.co/SvTxYq7TjD pic.twitter.com/BkhTrCr1OC
“The window’s definitely open (for a return),” Dickinson said. “That’s why I was big on trying to get an NCAA-certified agent. I wanted guidance in the process, but I also wanted to retain my eligibility. That was a very important thing for me just so I could have that safety net of having the opportunity or option of coming back to school.”
The season has been over for eight weeks, so it caught some off guard that it took this long to make the announcement. Dickinson said the process was tough on him, but he ultimately decided to go with his heart and see what happened next.
“The decision for me to enter the draft was a really tough one for me because I think it was just two great situations for me to either stay in college for another year or try to enter the NBA and become a professional athlete,” Dickinson said. “Both decisions were decisions that I was okay with, so I think that’s why it took me so long. I think my heart was with the NBA, so that’s where I wanted to go.”
Dickinson was a second-team All-American as a true freshman at Michigan this past season, averaging 14.1 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. By taking this step in the evaluation process, he has until July 19 to withdraw his name. The 2021 NBA Draft is set for July 29.