Michigan basketball's Darius Morris has announced that he has declared for the 2011 NBA Draft. The announcement came via a press release sent out by the Michigan athletic department, and it states that Morris isn't going to hire an agent "at this time."
By not hiring an agent, Morris leaves the door open to return to Michigan for his junior year. The deadline to withdraw from the draft is May 8. As long as he doesn't hire an agent, Morris has from now until then to decide if he wants to fully go pro or if he wants to return for another year in Ann Arbor.
Here is what Morris had to say about the decision to declare for the NBA Draft:
"All my life it has been a goal of mine to play in the NBA and I am blessed to have the opportunity to take this step towards that dream," said Morris. "I look forward to going through this process with the potential of playing at the next level."
Michigan head coach John Beilein said in the release that this is merely the "next step in gathering as much information as possible to assist Darius in making an educated decision." Basically, if Morris goes through the process and finds out his stock would benefit from another year in college, he can withdraw his name and return to Michigan. On the flip side, if he finds that it would be wise for him to fully commit to going pro, he can hire an agent and officially leave the Michigan basketball program.
The general consensus ever since this Morris to the NBA talk started has been that he should return for another year at Michigan. It not only would improve his stock and make him a potential lottery pick, but with the NBA labor situation making a lockout possible, guys could end up going pro and not having any basketball to play. I personally think it would be a huge mistake for him to leave for good, but then again, I'm a Michigan fan whose hopes for a successful 2011-12 season ride on this decision. Hopefully for the sake of the program he decides to stick around when all is said and done.