Malik Newman’s tenure in Starkville, Miss., was a brief one. That’s because the freshman phenom is going to test the waters at the next level.
The 6-3, 190-pound point guard will enter the 2016 NBA Draft after just one season at Mississippi State, according to CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein.
This decision may not come as a shock to many, as Newman entered the program as the No. 8 recruit and the best point guard in the country, according to 247Sports’ composite rankings. He was expected to be a one-and-done even though his freshman season wasn’t dynamic: Newman averaged 11.3 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists and shot 39 percent from the field last season. He was left off of the SEC All-Freshman Team.
Newman possesses NBA potential, but didn’t consistently display it at MSU. He particularly struggled during the homestretch of the season, and scored in double figures in just two of Mississippi State’s final 10 games. The Bulldogs finished 14-17, ending their season with a first-round loss in the SEC Tournament.
Newman is currently slotted as a second round pick in this summer’s draft, with the potential to improve his stock. The website DraftExpress.com projects Newman as the 40th pick in its latest mock draft.