Incoming ISU recruit testing NBA waters as “Plan B”

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Incoming Iowa State recruit Emmanuel Malou has entered his name into the NBA draft, but will not hire an agent as a “backup plan” should he not be granted NCAA eligibility, the Ames Tribune reports.

Malou on Tuesday night called going pro “Plan B” as he works to finish up his work and community college and then hear from the NCAA.

It’s been a long, circuitous route for Malou, who was born in Ethiopia before emigrating to Australia as a toddler. He’s bounced between Australia and the United State multiple times attending prep schools and community colleges. In addition to academic issues given all his movement, Malou also faces a potential problem with the NCAA given his eligibility clock. ISU is asking the NCAA to grant him an extension.

Malou was one of the most sought after junior college players in the country, and his Yuba College gym hosted a number of NBA scouts during his time there. The Cyclones have been counting on him to be a significant contributor for next season.

Whether or not Malou makes it to ISU this fall could have a profound impact on the Cyclones in their second year under Steve Prohm. Their backcourt returns intact with Monte Morris, Naz Mitrou-Long and Matt Thomas, but the loss of All-American Georges Niang and frontcourt mates Jameel McKay and Abdel Nader has left ISU thin up front. Not having Malou available would make them even shallower in a position that the Cyclones are actively already trying to add to with a graduate transfer.

ISU forward Deonte Burton is also declaring for the draft, but is expected to return to school.