Perhaps the least surprising news to break this afternoon is that all-american power forward Thomas Robinson will be leaving school a year early to enter the NBA Draft, according to a report from ESPN.com. He will announce the decision Monday morning.
Robinson had a chance to be a first round pick a season ago, but he returned to school for his junior campaign where he put together a season that earned him first-team all-american honors. He was runner-up for the Wooden Award and a finalist for the Naismith trophy after averaging 17.9 ppg and 11.8 rpg while leading Kansas to the national title game.
Even the most staunch supporter of athletes staying in school wouldn’t oppose Robinson’s decision to turn pro. His back story is well-known by now: in the span of a month, both of his maternal grandparents and his mother passed away, leaving Robinson and his younger sister. Part of the reason that T-Rob, as he’s known, played this season with such intensity and focus is that he was playing for his sister, to be able to support her and take care of her.
It’s a noble effort, one that deserves praise and will be rewarded come June 28th. Robinson is expected to be a top five pick.