NEWS

McCamey to submit name for NBA draft

John Supinie

Illinois junior guard Demetri McCamey will submit his name for the NBA draft but will not hire an agent, the university said Wednesday.

McCamey met with coach Bruce Weber on Wednesday morning. A first-team all-Big Ten selection who led the Illini in scoring (15.1 points per game) and ranked second in the nation in assists (7.1), McCamey isn't considered a first-round selection on respected mock drafts.

McCamey would like a chance to play in workouts with NBA teams to get a better idea of his stock with the league.

"I feel now is the time for me to seriously explore my lifelong dream of playing in the NBA,'' McCamey said in a statement released by the athletic department. "I will continue my coursework while preparing for workouts, and I do not plan to hire an agent in order to retain my eligibility. Coach Weber has helped me every step of the way, and I will work closely with him during this process as I pursue my goal of playing professional basketball.''

To retain his eligibility, McCamey has until May 8 to pull his name from the draft and can't hire an agent. McCamey said in March that he wouldn't leave for the chance of a second-round pick or a contract to play in Europe.

Weber said feedback from NBA personnel indicated McCamey would likely be a first-round pick a year from now with a similar jump in his game next season.

"I am proud of the way Demetri has handled this situation,'' Weber said in a statement. "He has participated in all our team workouts and weightlifting sessions this spring while continuing to work hard in the classroom. He also has kept an open line of communication with our staff, and his mother, Sabrina, has been tremendous as well. Demetri has our full support as he goes through this process.

"He has clearly made great improvements as a player, but more importantly has matured and grown as a person.''

John Supinie can be reached at Johnsupinie@aol.com