Within minutes of each other, the roommate tandem of Billiken stars made their announcements via social media to enter the 2020 NBA draft. Jordan Goodwin and Hasahn French are each coming off of great years in their junior seasons and are looking to take the next step in their game.
With the new rules in the NBA draft, there is no risk for players to enter their names in the draft pool. So long as they do not sign with a professional agent or team. Both players have indicated their intentions to retain eligibility.
As it stands right now, they will be able to remove their names from the draft list as close to 10 days before the NBA draft and return to SLU for their senior season. Typically, that would mean before June 15th. However, there may be some complications with the official dates regarding how COVID-19 has shaken the NBA’s schedule.
While neither player is expected to be a draft pick at this time, nor are they expected to follow former Billiken Javon Bess in signing an undrafted free agent deal, there is a benefit for the players to declare early.
When entering the NBA draft and going through what is known as the “Draft Evaluation Process,” the players will be provided a scouting report and evaluation on themselves, highlighting their chances to be drafted as well as places to improve their game should they want to be selected in the future.
Every player who has the opportunity to enter the evaluation process has a win-win scenario on their hands. Ether, they get drafted or come out of the offseason with a clear understanding of what to develop and how to improve their draft stock. This is no different for Goodwin and French. Both players will be given a professional report on places to grow and ways to show they are ready for the leauge.
Last off-season, an array of A-10 talented followed the same process and returned to their schools. Obi Toppin was one of many to enter the draft in 2019 and returned for a breakout season at Dayton, where he will now certainly be a lottery pick. Davidson’s Kellen Grady and then A-10 player of the year Jon Axel Gudmundsson followed suit in declaring for the draft before withdrawing and returning to the college ranks.
In the improbable event that one or both does not, it only bodes well for the program to have players drafted or enter the NBA regularly. In all likelihood, the Billikens will retain their soon to be senior stars and make a run at the A-10 Championship and NCAA tournament again.