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Julius Randle Reaction Round-Up

Well today it finally happened. The moment we all knew was coming ever since young Mr. Randle put on a UK hat one year ago in his Dallas press conference. Still, knowing it was coming doesn’t make it any easier. As a key part of a run to the title game Randle earned his spot among the legends of Kentucky and will go down as one of the most beloved players of the Cal era. With Julius declaring let’s take a look at what the pundits had to say about his decision:

[ESPN Via AP: Julius Randle Enters The NBA Draft]

Forward Julius Randle will leave Kentucky after one season to enter the NBA draft, where he is expected to be among the top five selections.

With five days left before the deadline for underclassmen to declare, the 6-foot-9 Dallas native announced the decision many expected even before he arrived as part of Kentucky’s best-ever recruiting class. Projected as a lottery pick from the outset, Randle solidified his draft stock by leading Kentucky (29-11) to the NCAA final behind a string of double-doubles despite being double- and triple-teamed.

[UK Athletic’s Guy Ramsey: Quickly as it went by, Randle won’t forget time at UK]

The 6-foot-9 forward arrived with a five-star pedigree and delivered. He was a dominant force from the beginning of the season onward in spite of facing double and triple teams after a 27-point, 13-rebound performance against Michigan State. Randle averaged 15.0 points and 10.4 rebounds, garnering Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year honors in the process.

“I would say my one year here was fantastic because (John Calipari) goes into your home when he recruits you and he says, ‘It’s going to be the hardest thing you’ve ever done,’ ” Randle said. ” ‘You’re going to work the hardest you ever did.’ You say OK, but you may not believe it. But once you’re in the fire, what he said is true.”

[SB Nation: Julius Randle declares, but how good of a pro prospect is he?]

Randle’s combination of strength and touch around the rim made him a force in college, but there are concerns about him at the next level. It’s mostly because he struggles finishing over length due to a wingspan that will be one of the shortest among starting NBA power forwards.

Another concern for Randle centers on his ability to develop a face-up game. As more and more power forwards are asked to stretch the floor to keep the paint unclogged, Randle is going to have to focus on improving his range if he’s going to be an All-Star-caliber player.

Randle is on to the association and I couldn’t be happier for the kid. He is making his dream a reality and it’s a great thing to see. What was your reaction to Randle’s announcement?

Article written by Andrew Cassady

Follow me @ACassady_KSR

9 Comments for Julius Randle Reaction Round-Up

  1. Rex
    9:45 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    Would have loved for him to return for another year. But he obviously made the correct decision. Can’t wait to cheer him on at the next level. Very happy that he is about to make his dreams come true. I’m very proud of how he represented the University of Kentucky.

  2. Sonny
    9:52 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    Randle will have trouble with wing span and length of NBA players along with 81 game seasons. He had trouble finishing games in a 30 game season.

    The NBA needs fixing in a big way, no where close to what it was 20 years ago..

  3. Indiana Tom
    9:56 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    Best of luck young man. I will miss you but I certainly understand your decision. God bless you and your family Julius!

  4. Klassact32
    10:08 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    Hard to get attached to anyone who comes because they have too. Don’t really care about the NBA or who plays in the league. This is not sour grapes talking. I wish the NBA had no age limit restrictions so we don’t have to deal with this issue.

  5. Ukato80
    10:11 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    I heard Randle cramped up during the press conference!

  6. nba is a poor product
    10:19 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    Randle is a ripped specimen indeed; however, he severely lacks bball IQ and skills. He is very raw. Wow the NBA game has declined, just a bunch of athletes…cant hit OPEN shots or FTs…ugly to watch. I quit watching NBA in the late 90’s. It is a garbage product.

  7. Blake
    10:30 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    Randle is a faster/quicker Zebo…his game should translate very well to the league where the spacing is much better and the guards know how to get the ball into the post effectively. ..even though I think he will be a 3…he is much better face up/driving rather than back to the basket post player..he passes better on the move as well…all he really needs to do is get a little consistency with his mid range jumper and he can definitely be an all star quickly….thanks to the young fella who gave his one year in college to the University of Kentucky. …I will support him in the NBA as I hope all of BBN will….

  8. Rj
    10:32 pm April 22, 2014 Permalink

    Knowing it was coming, makes it only a little easier. I feel like a jilted lover. I understand the nba is a beautiful mistress, but today I grieve…

  9. John
    1:31 am April 23, 2014 Permalink

    I understand everyone has opinions and there is a great debate over the “one and done” culture. As much as I loved watching Julius & James this year, and others like Davis & MKG before them, I hate seeing people criticize them for their decisions. I graduated from college in 1999 and while I’m blessed to have enjoyed a successful career, I have yet to crack the $1,000,000 mark. How can we say that a guy who is guaranteed $9,000,000 over the next 3 years whether he plays a game or not is wrong for leaving? In James Young’s case, how can we say a guy who is guaranteed about $4,000,000 over the next 3 years is wrong? I hope the Harrisons come back next year, but if they are First Round picks in the NBA when the season ends, I don’t blame them if they go. It’s life. It changes. Why not be happy that they have the opportunity to chase their dreams? I’m not trying to be a jerk, but I feel that attacking these kids is wrong. I went to college so that I could place myself in a position to earn a good living. They aren’t at UK for our entertainment. They are there so that they can chase their dreams and earn a living doing it. Thus, there is no debate. It’s about them, not the fans, and I doubt any fan, myself included would turn down guaranteed millions.