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Jeremiah Tilmon is entering NBA draft process... is there reason to worry?

Here are today’s Mizzou links.

Tilmon looking forward to “feedback” from the NBA

It seems like Missouri fans have been asking, “will he or won’t he,” about one of their star players for the last 10 years. In reality, it’s only been one... but it certainly feels like a lot longer.

Much of the hand-wringing has surrounded the decisions of the Porter brothers. Now, Tiger fans will get to sweat it out with another one of their favorite big men.

Missouri sophomore center Jeremiah Tilmon will make himself available for this summer’s NBA draft and will have until late next month to decide if he’s returning to school for his junior season.

”It’s always been a dream of mine since I started playing basketball to make it to the NBA,” Tilmon said in a news release Monday. “I want to get everything I can out of this process. I’m excited to learn from it and get the feedback I need.”

Tilmon doesn’t seem like an ideal candidate for the NBA draft at the moment. As Matt pointed out yesterday, Tilmon doesn’t have much of a stretch game and hasn’t developed the ability to be an elite defender or stay on the floor long enough to dominate. And while his athleticism, passing ability and great footwork would have been even more valuable in years past, the modern NBA game doesn’t seem to have room for him... at least, not as his game is currently constructed.

In fact, this may be a very good decision for Tilmon down the road. He’ll have the opportunity to learn a little about the lifestyle of a pro, including getting some professional feedback... all with the possibility of an eventual return to the black and gold.

That does not mean Tilmon’s time as a Tiger is necessarily done. New rules instituted in 2016 allow a player to go through the pre-draft process and return to school. This year’s NBA Draft Combine is May 14th through 19th. Players who have entered their name in draft consideration have 10 days after that to announce their intention to return to school.

During the process, Tilmon will likely aim to get an invite to the NBA Combine, where he’ll get a chance to play against top talent.

Tilmon could get an invite to the NBA Combine, which runs from May 14-19 in Chicago and is his best chance at showing teams what he can do against top talent. If he doesn’t get invited, he’ll have to impress teams through private workouts.

In all likelihood, Tilmon won’t head to the NBA this year. He’s made comments about returning in the past, and he’s not hiring an agent. It’s unlikely many teams would want to take a chance on Tilmon if he hasn’t proven he can stay on the floor against college bigs. However, Tilmon should get some valuable coaching and advice, which could be great for the future of his game. If you’re a Missouri fan, this may actually be welcome news (in a way.) If Tilmon is determined to make it to the NBA, testing the draft waters will let him know what he needs to do to get there.

Best case scenario: he looks good, is told what he needs to do to improve his stock and comes back for at least one more year as a Tiger.

Yesterday at Rock M

More Links:

  • It was a busy morning at PowerMizzou, where they recapped visits and offers from two Mizzou QB targets. Gabe also offered his usual Monday morning thoughts.
  • In his Monday breakdown of the week’s Mizzou news, Dave Matter focused on Kelly Bryant, who passed the eye test in his first on-field performance in Columbia.
  • The Ringer hasn’t been particularly high on Drew Lock in the NFL draft process, but they’ve got him going No. 10 in their latest mock draft. The NFL’s website also lists Lock as the ideal first-round pick for one team, though a lot of you may not like the idea...
  • We may be somewhat in the dark as to what Cuonzo Martin is doing for the rest of the 2019 class, but Martin clearly hasn’t lost his recruiting know-how based on the video below.