Mizzou's Bowers and English Testing the NBA Waters
Columbia, Mo. -- University of Missouri juniors Laurence Bowers and Kim English have declared for the 2011 NBA Draft, but will not hire agents.
By not hiring agents and maintaining their academic standing, both Bowers and English can return to Missouri if they remove their name from the draft by the May 8th deadline.
The pair are the first Tigers to enter the NBA draft early since underclassmen since DeMarre Carroll and Leo Lyons did after the 2007-08 season. Both players returned to Mizzou the following year and produced all-league seasons and helped the club to a school record 31 wins and the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight.
Bowers ranked second on the team in scoring (11.6) and first in rebounding (6.1). He also blocked 62 shots (second in the league) and recorded 38 steals in 24.8 minutes per game.
"I think for anyone who plays college basketball, having a chance to play in the NBA is a dream," Laurence Bowers said. "I had a chance to talk with my family and other loved ones and this is something I want to do. This rule is in place to allow guys like us to explore their options and make an informed decision."
English started 29 games each of the last two years. He scored his 1,000th career point this past season and scored a season high 21 points at home against NIT Champion Colorado. English is 10th in school history with 161 career three-pointers and his 1,063 career points ranks 36th all-time in school history.
"This is an opportunity I am looking forward to, to see where I stand as a basketball player," English said. "I have loved my experience at Missouri and I will make sure everything is in order for me to return if that's the best decision for me and my family. This rule is in place for us, the player, so I want to take advantage of it and do what I can do to become a better all-around player."