After a hot end to the season, Kansas redshirt sophomore guard Malik Newman is entering the 2018 NBA Draft, the school announced on Wednesday.
The 6-foot-3 Newman was one of the hottest perimeter shooters over the final month of the season as he put up 14.2 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game this season. Newman shot 41 percent from three-point range and 83 percent from the free-throw line.
“First off I want to thank God for the opportunity,” Newman said in the release. “I want to thank Coach Self and the coaching staff for giving me this opportunity to come to Kansas. I definitely want to thank my teammates. The journey with these guys has been nothing short of amazing. My two years here was everything that I asked for. My redshirt year, I had a chance to develop and Coach Self took me under his wing and really prepared me. This year I had a chance to come out and play and this was the plan, to try to put myself in position to chase my dream. I sat down and talked with Coach Self and my family and this is the best time to do it. With that being said, I’ll forego my junior year at Kansas and I will put my name in the NBA Draft and plan on signing with an agent.”
Since Newman plans to sign with an agent, it means he will officially turn professional and leave the Jayhawks. Without Newman, Kansas is still in good shape in the backcourt for next season. Cal transfer point guard Charlie Moore should be ready after a redshirt season and the Jayhawks also recruited a pair of McDonald’s All-Americans on the perimeter in Quentin Grimes and Devon Dotson.
An intriguing prospect in this draft because of his ability to shoot off the dribble, Newman is a former McDonald’s All-American who started his career at Mississippi State. Newman later transferred to Kansas following his freshman season. Sitting out last season due to redshirt, Newman leaves Kansas after playing one year with the program.