After going after Kentucky’s top recruits (James Wiseman, DJ Jeffries, Jalen Green, etc.) and celebrities (Drake), Memphis is now using John Calipari’s idea of hosting an NBA Pro Day prior to the college basketball season.
Memphis head coach Penny Hardaway announced that he will hold a pro day for NBA teams at the Tigers’ practice facility on October 7.
“The Memphis Tigers are excited to invite NBA teams to our 2019 pro day,” Hardaway told ESPN. “They will find a wide range of players with different specialties. We would like for front offices to get a firsthand look at our student-athletes before the season to become familiar with our roster and track their improvements throughout the 2019-20 season.”
Like Kentucky’s annual pro day, the format will be similar to the NBA Draft Combine, including measurements, athletic testing, shooting drills, and an hour of live 3-on-3 and 5-on-5 scrimmages. And again, like Kentucky, Memphis will host an open practice the very next day for NBA scouts.
Kentucky has held an NBA Pro Day for five consecutive years and were widely seen as the first college basketball program in the nation to host an event like this. Duke followed suit in 2016 when they hosted a preseason pro day of their own with prospects such as Jayson Tatum, Harry Giles, and Grayson Allen on the roster. The Blue Devils have hosted one in each of the two years since.
Kentucky, who has held its Pro Day at Rupp Arena in each of the last two years – the event was held in the Joe Craft Center the previous three – has not announced when its 2019 Pro Day will be held. Last year, the event was held on Oct. 7.
Imitation: the greatest form of flattery.