To the surprise of no one, Andrew Wiggins is expected to announce on Monday that he will be leaving the University of Kansas after one season, entering the 2014 NBA Draft after his freshman season, per a report from Jeff Goodman at ESPN. Though his stock may have taken a hit over the past few weeks, this decision was still expected for the most part.
However, the first thing Wiggins might be looking to do is to get the last taste that he left in the mouth of everyone out of those mouths as quickly as possible. After all, as the Jayhawks were eliminated from the NCAA Tournament in the Round of 32, Wiggins was barely noticed as he put up only four points, four rebounds, one assist, one steal and two blocks on just 1-6 shooting and while turning the ball over four times.
For starters, it is a bit of a necessity to realize that Wiggins wasn’t as bad as you might have heard or thought he was after initially watching the loss. Obviously his lack of offense was a glaring and the most notable concern, but Wiggins’ activity and energy-level were impressive, as were a lot of things he was able to do on the defensive end of the floor.
Quite frankly, Wiggins hasn’t lived up to the hype that surrounded him coming into college. In fairness, though, I’m not sure that any mortal human being could have lived up to that kind of hype. However, he’s not as NBA-ready as many would’ve had you believe coming into the college basketball season.
With that caveat, though, Wiggins’ potential is rivaled only by his teammate at Kansas, Joel Embiid, in this draft class. Wiggins’ athleticism, physical attributes, and instincts are near-elite and if he can continue to develop the skills to match those characteristics, he could be an All-Star eventually at the pro level. The first step, though, is somehow making sure that his final game in college isn’t a memory that sticks.