Maryland sophomore forward Justin Jackson is turning pro and declaring for the 2018 NBA Draft. Jackson’s news was first reported by Jonathan Givony of ESPN, as Jackson plans to sign with an agent and stay a professional.
The 6-foot-7 Jackson had a promising freshman campaign last season but he never got fully going during his second season. Injury limited Jackson to only 11 games as he’s been sidelined since December after surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder.
Jackson averaged 9.8 points, 8.1 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game as a sophomore, but his shooting percentages dipped to 36 percent from the field and 25 percent from three-point range as he initially suffered the injury in August.
As a freshman, Jackson became a promising pro prospect after shooting 43 percent from long range. An excellent athlete with “three-and-d” potential at the next level, Jackson is an intriguing prospect in this NBA draft because of his overall health and upside.
If Jackson shows that he’s on his way to being healthy then he could creep up draft boards in the next few months.
According to Givony’s report, Jackson could be ready and cleared for basketball activity in the next few weeks as he should be able to participate in drills during NBA workouts.