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Following Maryland’s defeat to Duke at the ACC Tournament and the team’s failure to reach the NCAA Tournament, Jordan Williams announced he would test the NBA waters. Today it is official.
Williams has signed with an agent – Andy Miller of ASM Sports – meaning that he will remain in the upcoming NBA draft rather than return to College Park for his junior season, according to a Washington Post report.
Miller’s other clientele includes Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett and New York Knicks guard Chauncey Billups.
After the news surfaced, Williams tweeted “Thank you for all the support .?.?. it really means a lot!! It’s been a dream to play in the NBA and now I finally have the opportunity!!”
Williams was the Terrapins’ leading scoring and rebounder last season, averaging nearly 17 points and 12 rebounds per game en route to earning first team All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors.
The sophomore also set a school record with 13 consecutive double-doubles, surpassing Len Elmore’s streak of 12 straight. Williams finished the season with 25 double-doubles, second-most in the nation.
Williams started all 33 games for the Terrapins, one of only two players to do so this season (Dino Gregory).
Current NBA mock drafts have Williams landing anywhere from the latter half of the first round to the second round. NBADraft.net and Popular blog Hoops Hype predicts Williams to fall 22nd overall to the Denver Nuggets, while DraftExpress anticipates 45th to the New Orleans Hornets.
ESPN’s Chad Ford rates Williams at the 37th best player in this year’s draft class, the fourth best center. Ford projects Williams could be a first round bubble pick.
With Williams gone, Gary Williams will his starting frontcourt from a season ago, as Cliff Tucker has traded in basketball shoes for football cleats and Gregory will graduate. The only other center on Maryland’s roster is junior Berend Weijs.
In limited minutes (12o), Weijs averaged less than two points and a 1.3 rebounds. Weijs weights in at a generous 200 pounds on the Maryland media guide. In contrast, Williams, like Weijs, is 6-10, but weighed 260 pounds.
Maryland’s recruiting class includes power forward Martin Breunig, a skilled big man whose game ranges from the ability to step out and score while still able to grab rebounds. Originally hailing from Germany, in his first season at St. John’s Northwest Military Academy (Delafield, Wis.), Breunig averaged 14 points and 10 boards.
The Terrapins are also in the mix for a cluster of big men to add to their 2011 recruiting class. href="http://www.scout.com">Scoutlists medium interest in forwards Anthony Estes (West Charlotte High School, Charlotte, N.C.) and Steele Davis (Our Savior New American School, Centereach, N.Y.), as well as center Matt Giorski (Cosby High School, Midlothia, Va.).