The 2014 NBA Draft is in the books, and for the third straight year the Wisconsin Badgers had zero players selected. It’s also the sixth time in the last seven years that has happened. The last Badger that was selected in the NBA Draft was Jon Leuer, who was picked by the Milwaukee Bucks with the 10th pick in the second round.
Next year’s draft looks to be a different story.
After a remarkable season last year, Frank Kaminsky has really risen in the ranks as one of the best players in college basketball. He’s cerntainly one of the best centers in the game today. He currently holds the school record for most points in a game (43 last year against North Dakota) and his 66 blocks last season ties him for the third-best mark in a single-season in school history. Kaminsky was named the 2014 NCAA Tournament West Region Most Outstanding Player while being the key piece in Wisconsin making it to the Final Four. If Frank the Tank would have forgone his senior year, I believe that he would have been drafted somewhere in this year’s draft. Another solid year this year and Kaminsky could find himself a lock as a first round NBA Draft pick.
The 2014-15 season will be the last season we see Sam Dekker in a Wisconsin Badger uniform in my opinion. Last season Dekker was predicted to be “the guy” in Madison. That changed once Kaminsky became the force he was a year ago. Start of the season I was torn between whether or not Dekker would leave after his sophomore year. As the season went on I knew Dekker would be back for one more run. And I’m not saying he had a horrible year last year. Averaging 12.4 points a game and 6.1 rebounds, Dekker was still a major player in the offense. Look for Sam to have a strong junior campaign and rise back up the NBA Draft board and also be a first round pick.
Two solid players that will more than likely end the Badgers NBA Draft drought. The highest Wisconsin player drafted was Devin Harris, who was selected fifth overall by the Washington Wizards and then traded to the Dallas Mavericks on draft night. Will one of these two players be picked higher than Harris? It’s a possibility, we’ll have to wait and see how this upcoming season plays out.