We wouldn’t make travel plans around this story just yet but according to ESPN, his parents, who have different opinions on this by the way, say Wendell Carter, Jr. is still undecided on entering the draft.
His dad says he’s “...always tried to keep Wendell ahead of any curve. ... I think it would be a good decision for him to go.”
His mother on the other hand, who earlier said something that seemed quite different, is encouraging him to come back to school: “I told him I wanted him to come back [to school]. His jaw dropped. It has nothing to do with basketball. It’s about you. It’s about who he is. He is a student at core. Yes, he is a great basketball player. But he’s an 18-year-old kid. He is having a tug with a heart and his mind. I don’t feel for him because I think it’s good for him that he is going through this struggle. It’s his decision. He has to live with it.”
Earlier Mrs. Carter had said this, leading us to severely doubt Carter would be back:
“If you look at the pros and the cons, college basketball is a big con. From a business perspective, college is 100 percent risk and it’s 100 percent negative to your business objective. It’s not putting you in any better position for achieving your business objective, which is reaching the NBA.”
“It could make you better at the risk exposing you. Think about it from a business perspective: If you are in high school, projected to go 1 to 14 in the lottery, why risk that positioning by going to college and getting exposed, even if there is an opportunity that you can possibly get better? Why?
“It’s a big con. Let the NCAA deal with those second-tier players and build their empire off them; let the one-and-dones go and build their empires with their skill set.”
“If I have the option of going straight to the pros and missing college, I go straight to the pros.”
At the time, we just figured, well that’s that, but apparently not.
As everyone (correctly) says in the first story, it’s Carter’s decision. But we’ll just say this, not that any of it matters.
When we watched the Kansas game, our gut instinct about Carter was that he didn’t like the idea of his last performance being so poor and that missing that shot at the end so badly would gnaw at him.
Putting him in the middle with RJ Barrett, Cam Reddish, Zion Williamson and Tre Jones orchestrating could help him to move much higher in next year’s draft and could help him to build a larger profile. We wouldn’t say that he played in Marvin Bagley’s shadow this year because Carter at times was the better player. But Bagley’s athleticism is stunning and people did tend to focus on him. As a sophomore, Carter would
And as we always say, there is no salary cap on endorsements. As a good student and an amateur actor (to date), Carter could be an unusually effective endorser.
Finally, not that this should matter to his decision, but during the NCAA tournament his mother clearly had the time of her life. Exuberant and passionate, she came pretty close to being Duke’s answer to Sister Jean.
Despite her concerns about college basketball, as much as any parent recently, she became one of us. It’d be fun to have her around for another run.
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