The inevitable has finally occurred. LSU freshman Ben Simmons has declared for the 2016 NBA Draft and will hire an agent, according to ESPN’s Jeff Goodman.
This decision comes as a no-brainer for Simmons, who was one of the top players in college basketball during his first and only campaign in Baton Rouge, La. The 6-10 forward averaged 19.2 points, 11.8 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game for the underachieving Tigers.
“We knew that there was a great possibility that Ben would only be at LSU for one season,” LSU coach Johnny Jones said according to NOLA.com’s Jerit Roser. “And if you are going to have a guy to do that, Ben was the perfect one because of how much of a team player he is. We are happy about the development that transpired during his time here and think he will continue to make great strides as he transitions into the NBA.
LSU finished the season 19-14 and declined an invitation to play in the National Invitation Tournament. Simmons is projected to be the top overall pick this summer and likely won’t fall out of the top three.
“We certainly feel as if he’s going to have a bright future as he continues to work hard to achieve his goal of playing at the highest level in the NBA,” Jones said according to Roser. “He impacted our team and our program during the year that he spent here. We wish him all the best.”