Kansas Sophomore Julian Wright Declares for NBA Draft

April 9, 2007


University of Kansas sophomore forward Julian Wright declared for the NBA Draft Monday afternoon. The 6-8 Chicago Heights, Ill., native averaged 10.4 points and 6.3 rebounds per game in his two seasons for the Jayhawks.

“Although it was a tough decision to make, I am declaring myself eligible for the 2007 NBA Draft,” Wright said. “I spoke extensively with my family and Coach Self and I have decided that this was the best decision for me at the time. I plan to hire an agent at the end of May.”

An Associated Press All-American Honorable Mention this past season, Wright saw his numbers improve dramatically for KU as he started 37 of the team’s 38 contests. He averaged 12 points and 7.8 rebounds per game and added 82 assists, 49 blocks and 55 steals in his sophomore campaign. The performance earned him numerous distinctions, including being named to the All-Big 12 First Team, the Big 12 All-Tournament Team and the MVP of the Las Vegas Invitational.

His best performance of the season came in a road contest against Border Showdown rival Missouri. Guiding the Jayhawks to their first victory at Mizzou Arena, Wright scored 33 points and grabbed 12 rebounds. In the 2007 NCAA Tournament, Wright averaged 11.5 points and 6.9 rebounds per game.

“I have mixed emotions today because I love my teammates and the coaching staff, but I know that this is the best decision I can make for myself and my family,” Wright added. “I spoke with Coach Self several times about this decision after the season and after hearing what he heard from his contacts throughout the NBA, I decided now was the best time to move forward with my career.”

Head coach Bill Self wished Wright and his family luck in the future, though he was saddened to see the dynamic forward leave the program.

“Julian has been a great person and player for this program. I am surprised, but I fully support him in this decision,” Self said. “After having spoken at length with contacts in the NBA, we surmised that Julian would be a top-15 selection in the 2007 NBA Draft and that the time to take the next step was the best move for him.”

– KU –