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Basketball Notes: Wiley declares, scheduling news

Austin Wiley declares for NBA Draft

NCAA Basketball: SEC Tournament-Auburn vs Missouri Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Wiley declares for the NBA Draft

In news that should surprise no one, Austin Wiley announced this morning his intentions to enter his name into the NBA Draft.

Wiley joins Jared Harper and Mustapha Heron as Auburn players who have entered this year’s NBA Draft. However, the big piece of this news comes from Wiley announcing that he will NOT hire an agent at this time. This allows Wiley to return to Auburn next season if he chooses to do so. Wiley averaged 8.8 points per game in the 2016-2017 season before sitting out last year due to the FBI investigation. If Wiley returns, he has been declared fully eligible for next season.

Head Coach Bruce Pearl said in a statement:

“In spite of all that we went through this season, Austin is still in a great position to accomplish all of his goals, I think as much as any player in the country who is testing the waters, Austin has the greatest chance to move up in the draft. He’s in great physical condition and has worked extremely hard. He will be impressive at the Combine.”

Considering Coach Pearl has encouraged his players to test the waters and seek evaluation from the NBA Scouts, it was only a matter of when, not if, this was going to be announced.

The NBA Combine is scheduled for May 16-20 and the deadline for players to withdraw from the draft is June 11. With limited action in the past year, it will be interesting to see if Wiley can rise his stock enough to become a first round pick.

We wish Austin well as he pursues his dream of playing in the NBA.

Auburn to play South Alabama the next 3 years

Another piece of Auburn’s schedule for next year has been solved. Auburn has agreed to a 2 for 1 series with South Alabama and will take place over the next 3 seasons. The Jaguars will come to Auburn next year and again in 2020-2021 while the Tigers will travel to Mobile in 2019-2020.

South Alabama is now coached by Richie Riley who comes to South Alabama from Nicholls.

I think this is great for Auburn to schedule more games against in-state opponents. Bruce has said in the past that he wanted to play more non-conference games against teams from Alabama. Just take playing UAB for instance. That series has been highly successful and one of the most anticipated non-conference games the past 3 years. Hopefully Auburn and UAB will continue to play each other on a yearly basis in addition to the new South Alabama series.

War Eagle!