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Blue forgoes senior year, enters NBA draft

Marquette junior Vander Blue  will forgo his senior year and declare for the 2013 NBA draft. He plans to hire an agent and will not have the possibility of returning to school.

Blue expressed his gratitude towards the university in a release put out by the Marquette athletic department.

“I’ve had three great years here and appreciate everything Marquette has done for me during that time to help me develop,” Blue said.  “At this point I want to pursue my dream.  I’ve prayed about it and discussed it with my family and think this is the right decision for me at this time.

“I really want to thank all of the coaches and staff at Marquette for helping me become a better player and a man,” Blue added.  “I also loved and appreciate the support shown by Marquette fans across the country during my career, especially during home games at the Bradley Center.”

Blue considered his options for weeks, with Paint Touches reporting last Tuesday that the 6-foot-4 guard was seriously contemplating the decision, more than just gauging his stock. It’s unknown whether he sought out review from the NBA’s Undergraduate Draft Committee, though it’s likely. He had until Apr. 10 to request feedback.

Coach Buzz Williams highlighted Blue’s growth both on and off the court the past three years. 

“As a program, we are all very thankful for everything Vander has done to help our team over the last three years, but more importantly I admire the growth he has made off the floor as a person,” Williams said.  “He has had success in each role that he has played every year he has been here, and has continued to improve.  We will always be grateful for his contributions and wish him nothing but the best in his professional career.”

It’s presumed that a stellar NCAA Tournament performance, one in which Blue averaged 18.3 points and helped Marquette to its first Elite 8 in 10 years, was a main factor in his decision to turn pro.

Blue went from an intriguing prospect to a legitimate candidate for this June’s draft, drawing rave reviews from ESPN.com’s Chad Ford:

ESPN.com’s Chad Ford updated Blue’s biography on March 26, writing that “his elite athletic ability, his defensive toughness and his leadership have all caught NBA scouts’ eyes. If he shot it a little better, or was a little taller, he’d get a serious look in the lottery […] don’t count him out of the first-round conversation yet.” It’s unclear whether Ford meant the 2013 or 2014 draft.

Ford also bumped Blue from the 90s of his top-100 list to No. 75, and tweeted during Marquette’s Tournament run that Blue was an “intriguing prospect.”

DraftExpress.com currently has Blue as the No. 21 selection in the 2014 NBA draft, while NBADraft.net lists him at No. 38 in the 2014 draft.

Draft Express’ Jonathan Givony tweeted on March 23 that Blue was “trying to force his way into the 2013 NBA draft w/ a strong NCAA Tournament so far.”

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One Comment on “Blue forgoes senior year, enters NBA draft”

  1. Mike
    April 16, 2013 at 8:58 am #

    Cant really wrap my head around this

    But hey, gotta get paid

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