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Jarred Vanderbilt declares for the NBA Draft, won’t hire agent

Jarred Vanderbilt just announced he will test the waters of the NBA Draft, meaning he is declaring without hiring an agent.

“This season wasn’t easy for me,” Vanderbilt said in a statement from UK. “God works in mysterious ways and presented me with a number of challenges to overcome. I believe I became a better man and player because of them, but it’s also made me think about my future and what’s best for me. At the end of the day, my goal has always been to make it to the NBA. I knew Coach Cal and the staff would challenge me and prepare me to make that step better than anyone else.

“I know I have more to my game to show, but now I’ve got to figure out if the time is right for me to do it at the next level or if I would be better to return to school. With that said, I’m entering my name in the 2018 NBA Draft and testing the waters. This wasn’t an easy decision, but I want to use this process to get an evaluation from the NBA and see where I’m at. I appreciate the support of the staff and the Big Blue Nation while I work through this.”

Due to injury, Vanderbilt played in only 14 games, averaging 5.9 points and 7.9 rebounds. He grabbed 10 or more rebounds in five of his last six games; in fact, he was Kentucky’s leading rebounder.

“Jarred is in a unique situation because of the time he missed on the court this season,” John Calipari said. “I truly believe we only saw a small part of Jarred’s game because he had to figure out how to play with us and we had to figure out how to play with him. What we did see was a player with an unbelievable motor who will grab every ball, get his teammates involved and fight like heck. We would certainly welcome Jarred back with open arms and I would love the opportunity to coach him for a full season, but I know he needs to go through this process and see where he’s at. He has the type of skills and talent that NBA teams love; now we have to figure out if now is the time or if he needs another season. Either way, Jarred’s best days are ahead of him and I can’t wait to see him back on the court.”

Vanderbilt is the sixth Kentucky player to declare for the draft, joining Kevin Knox, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Hamidou Diallo, PJ Washington, and Wenyen Gabriel. Like PJ and Wenyen, he will have until May 30, 10 days after the NBA Draft Combine, to decide whether or not to return to school.


Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

76 Comments for Jarred Vanderbilt declares for the NBA Draft, won’t hire agent

  1. jos_ros_
    1:00 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    uhhh what

  2. Alex90
    1:00 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Jared- Ok NBA am I a lottery pick?

    NBA: who are you?

    • henderblue
      1:06 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      They know who he is. There’s an upside to being a 6’9 guy who can run the floor and defend. And handle the ball. I hope he comes back and hones his skills. And proves he can stay injury free. And helps us win a championship.

    • Alex90
      1:16 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Take a joke dipshit. He has tge potential to be a Ben Simmons clone but he also is an injury prone 19 year old that showed zero offensive skill in his 10 games he did play

    • BBNDan7
      1:20 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      It wasn’t a good joke if you have to explain it

    • Goose
      4:27 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Hey bbndan, if I wanted a good joke, I’d follow you into the John to take a piss.

    • henderblue
      1:30 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      NBA : who is Alex90? Any number of people : an idiot

    • Alex90
      2:20 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Yea the joke was obvious you’re just an idiot

    • Alex90
      2:28 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      He mad

    • bigbluehank
      2:43 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      A Ben Simmons clone? Eh…let’s pump the brakes a little bit.

    • runningunnin.454
      1:22 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Not a very funny joke; and what is tge potential?

    • katfan33
      1:41 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Humor must be lost in Ky these days. Sad
      Good joke Alex90.

    • Booby Petrino
      1:59 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      yeah I’m rolling that was so funny. *sarcasm off now*

    • UK Big Board Update
      8:23 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      “LAFF AT MY JOKES!!!”

  3. Booby Petrino
    1:00 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Not surprising. Sounds like the best option for him.

  4. Jeremy D
    1:01 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink


  5. sprtphan
    1:03 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Miracle cure!

  6. jos_ros_
    1:03 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    like you guys said on the radio it’s all cool when you’re projected in the draft and you declare to get feedback and what not, i’m quite perplexed by PJ and jared

  7. BBNDan7
    1:04 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Why would anyone not do this? Do people really not understand this process?

    • jos_ros_
      1:07 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      i understand it but what is the point if you’re not even projected or going to the combine ?

    • henderblue
      1:07 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      They honestly don’t.

    • Alex90
      1:18 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      We understand the process and it makes sense for PJ but Vanderbilt can’t even participate in the combine and no NBA will start him until he shows he is healthy. You guys aren’t that smart.

    • BBNDan7
      1:21 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      You can still talk to nba GM’s, moron

    • Alex90
      2:30 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      You also get medical tests done at the combine, moron.

    • Goose
      4:28 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      I bet your pecker is tiny.

    • Booby Petrino
      1:11 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      With ya, Dan. jos it would be silly to not at least get feedback from the NBA…why pass that up?

    • Alex90
      1:21 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      His feedback is obvious. Get healthy and learn how to shoot.

    • BBNDan7
      1:22 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Maybe you should be an NBA GM if you’re so good at this, Alex

    • jos_ros_
      1:27 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      they got feedback via phone earlier this week soooooo

    • Alex90
      2:21 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      75% of GM’s aren’t very good at their job so it’s not hard

    • jos_ros_
      1:28 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      you don’t have to declare to get feedback

    • johndedrick
      1:26 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      You guys realize this is Vanderbilt right? Yes it normally makes sense for them to declare so they can go to the combine, work out and get feedback. Jared is hurt, he can NOT do that. So if you can’t work out at the combine there is no feedback to get. It really makes no sense for him to declare. He could get the basic feedback just by having Cal ask some of the guys in the NBA he knows. This declaring for the draft is actually kind of silly in this situation.

    • Booby Petrino
      2:01 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      lol why are yall so mad that he declared? Who cares if it doesn’t make sense to you. It’s really none of your business.

  8. wyatts1
    1:06 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Vando is the one guy that we can’t afford to lose, and after the past season of injury and offensive inabilities that he’s had I truly believe that if he returns he could be a lottery pick in next year’s draft. He’s got all the intangibles to be a great player, he passes like a guard, fast/quick like a guard, rebounds like rodman, and is 100% effort and ?, and can guard virtually all 5 positions in a pinch. This is the one player that I think we HAVE to make sure is coming back. I do see the potential to be great.

  9. KYjellyRoll
    1:15 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    They’re all gone…

    • MadHatter
      1:51 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      You heard it here first, folks.

    • UK Big Board Update
      8:25 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink


  10. Daddyof3Ballers
    1:23 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    He won’t get invited to the combine and he’ll be back is my prediction…

  11. UKLugo
    1:24 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    The only surprise to me is that Nick hasnt done the same. These guys come here EXPECTING to leave after one year. Nothing against them or that idea. It’s just the reality. If they dont go after year 1, it’s a disappointment to them. Theyre so close they can taste it. This is the nature of the beast when you recruit top level talent in this day and age.

  12. UKLugo
    1:27 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Nothing will get in there way if they really want to go. If a player is eligible to play his way onto an NBA roster, not even a broken foot will stop him if he wants to go. Whether he’s drafted in the 2nd round or not at all, he’d still have to fight his way through the GLeague or DLeague or whatever to make an NBA roster. If he wants to play without going to school, he will go.

  13. DelrayCat
    1:27 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    I thought he was hurt and not able to participate in the combine? I am confused. So I guess he will simply get NBA feedback without participating…although this seems like a good idea from his perspective…but no doubt they will all recommend he return to school.

    • Angelo
      2:41 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      How can he try out before surgery??

  14. RajonTheDon9
    1:29 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Great news! No offensive game, my grandmother has more skill around the rim! Less equals more folks, got rid of him and Hami aka Archie Goodwin! This is great news! Don’t need him eating up valuable minutes ala WCS.

    • henderblue
      1:37 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Your grandma knows your a dumbass too

    • BBNDan7
      1:39 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Did you actually just say Willie ate up valuable minutes?

    • Miller45
      1:48 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      a lady in front of me at the grocery this afternoon asked the butcher what the difference is between bone in and boneless ribeye, I was 100 percent sure that would be the most moronic thing I would hear all day but I stand corrected

    • henderblue
      2:25 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Now that’s humor right there. Alex90, take some lessons from Miller45. Good one Miller…

  15. Lip Man 1
    1:45 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Understand why he’d want to find out where he is at but no NBA team will even consider drafting him right now because of his injury situation and because he wasn’t able to play a lot this past year.

    I’m guessing he and Gabriel will both be returning next year.

  16. Parker_UKFanNC
    1:45 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Perfectly reasonable to go to get the experience.

  17. BBNDan7
    1:46 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Vando may also just need more time to collect all the info and make an informed decision. If he comes back and gets hurt AGAIN then he’s probably never in the nba

    • Goose
      4:37 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      And I bet you’ll never graduate 3rd grade.

    • UK Big Board Update
      8:26 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Goose is TRIGGERED, y’all… LOL

  18. No word on Jonny and BEE-rad?

  19. specks
    1:51 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    He is likely just buying more time to decide if he wants to stay in the draft or come back. He has the NBA info already.

  20. Jeremy D
    1:54 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    They come here to go pro, that’s Cal’s recruiting pitch,not to be a student athlete,This is the Culture that has been created here.

  21. Underdog
    2:01 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    With his injury situation, I don’t believe he can get drafted, but if i was a NBA team, I would pick him up on contract and pay him a few hundred thousand dollars a year to retain his services. The risk would be they lose, say, $300,000 a year, x 3, or about a million dollars.

    The benefit to them is that they are getting a BIG TIME NBA player for pennies on the dollar. Because if he stayed at UK and was healthy, he would be a top 4 pick next year, and sign a deal for $10,000,000 over 3 years.

    In other words, Jarred, if you think you can stay healthy, stay at UK and be guaranteed a min of 10x what some team will HOPEFULLY pay you this year.

    There is no question that you are lottery talent, but nobody will take the risk to draft you now. The big question is health. Your body may not be durable enough. I pray it is.

    And I hope you’ll come back to UK, stay healthy, and show the world your offensive game, while averaging 12 boards a game and being the most feared defender in college basketball, while leading us to our 9th title.

    • chrisg18
      2:28 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      Top 4? Not in today’s NBA. Putting the ball in the basket is valued over everything else in today’s game. Obviously that is the weakest part of his game.

    • henderblue
      5:32 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      It’s probably not as valued as stopping people from putting the ball in the basket. And he’s really good at that. Among other things.

  22. Wade
    2:17 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Stupid decision. I agree with cal that he’s Dennis Rodman. But he’s not healthy and can’t prove to be healthy or hit an inside shot. I know he can and I know he’s excellent so do scouts. But why not get healthy come back share time with a loaded team and get drafted high with guaranteed money. All he has to do is have a healthy year and is top 14 pickno doubt. I’d hate to see him get hurt in pre draft workouts and lose his shot and come back to uk injured. But he could shine and get signed. There’s a lot to love about his game. Either way I wish the best for him.

  23. Catlogic15
    2:24 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    By the way, what exactly is his injury situation? Last we heard, sprained ankle. Then heard surgery perhaps, but on what? Total secrecy, which an NBA team would need to cut through.

    The most enigmatic player in the Cal era.

  24. chrisg18
    2:27 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    This makes zero sense considering he is injured and apparently having surgery.

  25. makeitstop
    2:33 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Did anyone here take the PSAT? He knows he’s probably coming back, or he’d hire an agent. But he gets to go get interviewed and evaluated and even if he’s not at the combine doesn’t mean he won’t get valuable experience that will give him a leg up next year. Getting a team interested in you now so they watch closer next year could be worth extra millions AND a better fit with a team or coach who believes in him.

  26. bigbluehank
    2:43 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    All of these guys declaring for the draft is so ridiculous that it has become comedic.

    • makeitstop
      2:53 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      But they’ve really just signed up to do a trial run. The difference in GM salaries is about $2m/year in part based on how well they evaluate talent. Everyone sees the same jumps, measures the same wingspans and sees the same stats from college. It’s the other metrics they measure that reduce – but never eliminate – the risk or upside. This gets the kids comfortable so next year (hopefully) they go in with an edge. Why not? Walk ons can’t do it bc no one will interview them but if you’re getting looks its because someone sees potential.

  27. bigbluehank
    3:16 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    I understand what they’re trying to do, and I get your point. What bothers me is that this reinforces the notion that players are simply using UK as a stepping stone to the NBA. It seems like some of these guys have little to no concern or connection to the program. They’re basically begging a pro team to take a flyer on them so they don’t have to return to school. While the same could be said of many teams in the NCAA, this issue is most prominent with UK.

    • RealCatsFan
      3:45 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

      We knew this is the way Cal operates when he was hired at UK. And this is even more so now that the NBA has changed the rules and a player can declare and be evaluated to get an idea of his projected position in the draft before committing one way or the other. Frankly, I’m surprised more players don’t do this. The radio said that there are something like 175 players who have declared for the NBA so far this year. 175!! So that goes to show you that it is not just going on at UK.

      Might as well get used to it. I really think that all or most of these guys who did not hire agents will be back next year. But we will all have to wait and see…

  28. Randall lee
    3:28 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Alex don’t question dan, he knows everything there is to know about basketball.

  29. secrick
    3:56 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Who said he was having surgery? Never heard that myself.

  30. Realme
    4:05 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Dream job, huge salary. You’re offered the opportunity to go meet the potential employers to see if they think you have a future there, and what advice they have for you. And if it doesn’t result in anything, no harm done, you get to go back to where you already are. Of course you go take the meeting.

  31. Theymademesignup
    4:16 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    Is this even news? We just went over this last year when they changed the rule. Almost all the guys who are future NBA players would be testing the waters and going through the process so they can get the feedback they need from NBA clubs. Nothing new here at all. If an agent isn’t hired who cares? This is how things work now with the new rules.

  32. Goose
    4:22 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    I can’t run but I can push and pull myself up and down the court like you wouldn’t believe. So do I get my million??

  33. binarysolo
    4:54 pm April 20, 2018 Permalink

    You guys. The fact he hasn’t hired an agent means at the very least he’s leaving one foot in Lexington while he does this. If he doesn’t go this year he’s definitely going next year, and he’s given one free test drive. It would be stupid for him not to go through this process.

    The troubling thing is how players feel they are failures if they’re not one-and-dones. Go check out Mrs. TT’s post from earlier if you haven’t already.

  34. ukcats1776.90
    10:48 am April 21, 2018 Permalink

    this decision is almost as dumb as Matt Jones decision to use KSR as a soundboard for all his idiotic communist politics

    • UK Big Board Update
      11:06 am April 21, 2018 Permalink

      Triggered the snowflake!!!!