Wednesday is national signing for the spring window of basketball recruiting. Thankfully, there will be no fax cam set up, as there had been in the past for football, to watch the letters roll in.
What we will begin to receive Wednesday is some clarity of who is actually coming to Washington next season. The Huskies have two signed letters of intent from the early signing period, which came from McDonald’s All-American point guard Nigel Williams-Goss and four-star recruit Darin Johnson. They will be part of the rotation and Williams-Goss is likely to start.
Washington has verbal commitments from point guard Jahmel Taylor and JUCO wing Mike Anderson. They will help with depth.
There are rumors that UNLV power forward Mike Moser, a very good and seasoned player, may be transferring to Washington. He would be a huge get after Aaron Gordon spurned Washington for Arizona. Moser would have only one year of eligibility, but, no one thinks Gordon will be around for more than a season.
Then, there is C.J. Wilcox. The redshirt junior received feedback from the NBA’s Undergraduate Advisory Committee and is still weighing whether or not to enter the draft. Wilcox never formally declared for the draft — that paperwork is separate of the paperwork to request an assessment from the advisory committee — so, he didn’t have to withdraw by the NCAA’s April 16 deadline for underclassmen to be out of the draft in order to retain eligibility.
With that deadline passed, Wilcox now must decide by April 28 whether or not he wants to enter the draft. That’s the NBA’s deadline for underclassmen to either be in or out of the draft. If Wilcox declares for the draft in this secondary window, he will automatically lose his college eligibility. That was the importance of the first deadline. Wilcox no longer has the benefit of recourse.
Wilcox led Washington by scoring 16.8 points per game, but shot just 41.9 percent from the field. Last season, 42.7 percent of Wilcox’s field-goal attempts were 3-pointers. That did little to shake his label of being just a shooter.
Most draft gurus have Wilcox projected to be selected near the middle of the second round. Being drafted in that position has its risks. First-round draft picks automatically receive guaranteed two-year contracts with third-year and fourth-year team options. On rare occasions, players drafted near the top of the second round are able to negotiate contracts that result in guaranteed money. Players in Wilcox’s projected draft position do not.
Questions about Wilcox’s durability and versatility are in front of NBA general managers. Each of the last two seasons, Wilcox has had practice time limited because of non-contact injuries. In the 2012 season, Wilcox had a hip injury that caused him to miss three games and copious amounts of practice.
This season, Wilcox averaged 34.8 minutes per game, the most of any player under Lorenzo Romar since he has been at Washington. Wilcox also practiced little from mid-January on because of pain on the outside of his left foot. Wilcox and Romar both attributed part of Wilcox’s shooting problems to his lack of practice time.
The timetables the NCAA and NBA have instituted are not for Wilcox’s benefit. Wednesday opens the spring signing period for men’s basketball. It’s not coincidence the NCAA’s withdrawal deadline has been moved in front of the first day of the signing period, which runs from Wednesday to May 15.
Wilcox’s ability to gather information is also stunted by the NCAA. Wilcox will be able to receive more feedback about his possible draft position over the next 12 days, but won’t be able to participate in any pre-draft workouts. Only Romar can talk with NBA talent assessors then filter the information back to Wilcox. Even family members are banned by the NCAA — they’re considered third-parties — from talking with the NBA directly.
Wednesday afternoon we’ll meet with coach Romar for a press conference. Come on back for video, highlights and thoughts.