Home Text messaging Ron Harper Jr. declares for NBA draft, ends historic Rutgers career

Ron Harper Jr. declares for NBA draft, ends historic Rutgers career

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One of the greatest careers in Rutgers basketball history has officially come to an end.

Ron Harper Jr. announced Wednesday that he is declaring himself for the NBA draft, concluding his four-year stint at Piscataway that ranks among the greatest in program history. The move was expected, but it is now official.

Harper became the 11th player in program history to be named an All-American last week when he received an honorable mention from The Associated Press. He finished his career with 1,525 points, tied with Roy Hinson for 11th in program history.

Harper will be remembered for his game-winning 3-pointer on the half court that beat the buzzer to upset No. 1 Purdue in December, but there was also his game-winning 3-pointer at Indiana that featured a dangling celebration, a memorable performance in a resounding win over second-year rival Seton Hall and the many solid performances he put in while helping the Scarlet Knights regain respectability.

He was instrumental in Rutgers earning their first NCAA Tournament bid in 30 years as a junior in the 2020-21 season and then taking them back to March Madness as a senior in 2021-22, the first time the Scarlet Knights have made a return-to-return NCAA Tournament since the 1974-75 and 1975-76 seasons.

Harper was the first player in program history to be named an All-Big Ten selection by the Associated Press and, along with teammate Geo Baker, was the first player since 1993 to be selected twice in all leagues. .

He has a chance to be the first Scarlet Knight to be selected in the NBA draft since Hamady N’Diaye was chosen in the second round by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 2010 draft. The 2022 draft is scheduled to take place on Thursday, June 23 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Here’s the current composition of Rutgers’ roster (marked by years of eligibility remaining, assuming fellow senior Caleb McConnell leaves):

2 years – Paul Mulcahy (L), Aundre Hyatt (L)

3 years – Cliff Omoruyi (C), Dean Reiber (F), Mawot Mag (F), Oskar Palmquist (F), Jalen Miller (G)

4 years – Derek Simpson (L), Antwone Woolfolk (F)

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Brian Fonseca can be reached at [email protected].