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Report: Robert Williams to Declare for 2018 NBA Draft

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Texas A&M sophomore forward Robert Williams is turning pro.

Williams announced his decision to enter the NBA draft and bypass his final two seasons of eligibility after the seventh-seeded Aggies lost to third-seeded Michigan 99-72 in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament Thursday night.

“It’s something I’ve been dreaming about – the next step,” said Williams, who scored 12 points and added six rebounds, three assists and three blocks in his final game with the Aggies.

Williams, 19 years old and listed at 6-10, will finish the semester at Texas A&M before pursuing his dream of playing in the NBA.

“It’s just a blessing,” Williams said as he stood in a locker room in the bowels of the Staples Center, home to the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers. “Every kid dreams of going pro in a sport they love.

Source: Austin Laymance of the Houston Chronicle

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College Headlines

Report: G League to Offer $125K Salaries to Elite Prospects

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The NBA G League today announced a Select Contract as part of a comprehensive professional path that will be available, beginning with the 2019-20 season, to elite prospects who are eligible to play in the NBA G League but not yet eligible for the NBA.  The contracts, which will include robust programmatic opportunities for development, are for elite players who are at least 18 years old and will pay $125,000 for the five-month season.

“Select Contracts are an answer to the basketball community’s call for additional development options for elite players before they are eligible for the NBA,” said NBA G League President Malcolm Turner.  “The supporting infrastructure surrounding these newly-created Select Contracts is designed to provide a rich offering of basketball and life skills developmental tools for top young players to grow along their professional paths from high school to the pros.”

Source: NBA

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Report: NCAA Announce New College Basketball Policies

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The NCAA adopted a sweeping series of policy and rules changes Wednesday that it hopes will clean up college basketball, which has been engulfed by an FBI investigation and other corruption over the past two years.

Among the significant changes that were adopted by the NCAA’s board of governors and Division I board of directors are allowing elite high school basketball recruits and college players to be represented by agents who are certified by the NCAA; allowing eligible underclassmen to enter the NBA draft and return to school if undrafted; introducing more rigorous certification requirements for summer amateur basketball events; and imposing longer postseason bans, suspensions and increased recruiting restrictions for coaches who break rules.

“These changes will promote integrity in the game, strengthen accountability and prioritize the interest of student-athletes over every other factor,” NCAA president Mark Emmert said in a statement. “We remain committed to promoting fairness in college sports and creating an environment that will champion the success of student-athletes.”

Source: Mark Schlabach of ESPN

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Sources: NBA, NBPA Talk Lowering Draft Age Requirement

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The NBA and National Basketball Players Association’s conversations on eliminating the one-and-done entry rule have centered on lowering the minimum age requirement no sooner than the 2020 draft, league sources told ESPN.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver and NBPA executive director Michele Roberts have discussed scenarios to end the requirement for American players to wait one year after high school graduation to enter the NBA draft, but no formal agreement could be reached before the NBPA’s executive committee, including president Chris Paul, gather for a meeting at the end of the NBA playoffs in June.

Silver and Roberts have both expressed a desire to change the rule, but it remains to be seen how the process of negotiating a rule change between the league and players will unfold.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN

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