Robinson, Bowman Declare for 2018 NBA Draft

jerome robinson, ky bowman

Over the course of the past few months, there has been talk among NBA scouts and insiders that Boston College men’s basketball combo guard Jerome Robinson may have played his way into the first round of this year’s draft. On Wednesday afternoon, ESPN’s Jeff Goodman tweeted that the junior—along with his partner-in-crime, Ky Bowman—is indeed testing the waters.

Reportedly, both guards are not hiring agents, effectively preserving their NCAA eligibility. Either can return to BC if they choose to withdraw their names from the draft no later than 10 days following the combine (May 16-20), submit a letter of intent to Director of Athletics Martin Jarmond, or go undrafted. For the moment, though, the backcourt duo will use the next two months to receive feedback and evaluate their potential draft stock.

“After consulting with my family and coaches, I have decided to declare for the 2018 NBA Draft,” Robinson told BCEagles.com. “I will not hire an agent, as to maintain my collegiate eligibility. I am thankful for my experience at BC and this opportunity and I look forward for what is to come.”

The junior, a week removed from becoming the fifth player in program history to be named an AP All-American, headlines the announcement. A unanimous All-ACC First Team selection, Robinson just polished off a career year, posting 20.7 points per game and eclipsing the 20-point mark 18 times throughout the five-month campaign. He really turned heads during conference play: The 6-foot-6 guard led the ACC with 24.3 points per game—3.1 more than future lottery pick Marvin Bagley III—on 55.1 percent shooting, including a 44.5-percent clip from 3-point land. With game-winning shots to knock off a top-ranked Duke team in the ACC opener and a fifth-seeded North Carolina State squad in the conference tournament, as well as a 46-point performance in South Bend—the most points scored in a single game by a visiting player in ACC history—Robinson burst onto the national scene.

As a result, several big-time media outlets have the junior going in the late first round of this year’s draft. In fact, on Tuesday, Sports Illustrated pegged Robinson to be selected 28th by the Brooklyn Nets. If the projections are accurate and he does not return to Chestnut Hill, Robinson will be the first BC prospect picked in the first round since Reggie Jackson in 2011.

Bowman, on the other hand, has yet to garner comparable attention. Coming into the season, the sophomore guard was seen as the Eagles’ real NBA talent, but has recently dropped eight spots in Aran Smith’s nbadraft.net top-100 Big Board. Sitting at the 95th spot, the Havelock, N.C. native’s chances of hearing his name called in June are quite slim. Nevertheless, getting a foot in the door is smart for any player with Bowman’s upside.

At 6-foot-1, the point guard logged 17.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 4.7 assists per game this season. Although his shooting percentage dipped and his turnover numbers took a turn for the worse, Bowman resembled a more complete player than his 2016-17 self. With the potential to notch a triple-double any night, the explosive guard has earned the reputation as one of the most dangerous playmakers in the ACC. That said, his inconsistency, particularly pertaining to ball security, is undoubtedly a red flag.

Together, the two averaged a combined 38.3 points per game this season, accounting for 50.1 percent of BC’s scoring output this year. Without both, let alone one, of them, the Eagles will look like a completely different team in 2018-19.

It’s safe to say that BC fans and head coach Jim Christian—fresh off the program’s first winning season since 2010-11—will be holding their breath for the next few months. 

Featured Image by Celine Lim / Heights Staff

About Andy Backstrom 278 Articles
Andy is the sports editor of The Heights. He is from the suburbs of Philly, but has been an Arizona Cardinals enthusiast since the first grade. Every so often, he'll replay Super Bowl XLIII on Madden to exact revenge on his father's beloved Steelers. You can follow him on Twitter @AndyHeights.