Texas guard Andrew Jones will declare for the NBA draft but will not sign with an agent.
ESPN first reported the news late Wednesday. Jones could not be reached immediately, however a Texas spokesman confirmed the report.
“My family and I have decided that it is best for me to test the waters,” Jones said in a statement issued by the school. “We want to see where I stand in the draft, but we’re also looking to improve my game as well. We are looking to get accurate feedback from NBA personnel to know my scouting report, so that I can get better during this offseason.”
After the Big 12 tournament, the freshman from Irving told reporters he would likely return to Texas for his sophomore season. Jones averaged 11.4 points and shot 33 percent from 3-point range in 33 games. He shot 42.5 percent from the floor overall last season.
Jones wound up being the team’s second-leading scorer in conference play behind fellow freshman Jarrett Allen, who also has declared for the draft but retained his amateur status.
By not signing with an agent, both Jones and Allen can go through the NBA scouting combine and workout for teams to gauge their draft prospects. The NCAA changed the rules last year specifically for this reason — so players can test the waters but still return to school.
The Longhorns are projected to have the nation’s sixth-best recruiting class in 2017, according to 247Sports. However, losing both Allen and Jones would be a devastating blow for UT coach Shaka Smart and the Longhorns, a program that just completed a disappointing 11-22 season.
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