Today's Paper Latest Coronavirus 🔴Children in Peril Quarantine Families Core values App Listen Story ideas iPad Weather Newsletters Obits Puzzles Archive
ADVERTISEMENT
story.lead_photo.caption Arkansas guard Isaiah Joe (1) drives to the lane Friday, Feb. 21, 2020, as he is pressured by Missouri guard Dru Smith during the first half in Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville. ( Andy Shupe)

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas sophomore guard Isaiah Joe has submitted his paperwork for the 2020 NBA Draft, Razorbacks coach Eric Musselman said Monday on a teleconference with reporters.

Musselman said that Joe has not signed an agent. The current deadline for underclassmen to return to school after going through the draft process is June 3.

Joe has two seasons of eligibility remaining in college.

"He’ll keep the door open for a possible return to college," Musselman said. "Isaiah and his family, they want to gather as much feedback as they possibly can. They want to learn through this process and then make a decision whenever that time comes, whether to keep his name in the draft or to come back to the University of Arkansas.

"That paperwork was submitted (Monday), so we want to support him. We had a Zoom call today with our current team and Isaiah was on it. He’ll remain part of everything that we do going forward. He’ll just kind of have a dual role in pursuing that goal as well as doing anything that we do as a program as well."

According to The Athletic’s Sam Vecenie’s latest 2020 NBA Draft Big Board, which was released on April 2, Joe is the 44th-best draft-eligible player in the class. Joe was not listed on Vecenie’s most recent mock draft published on March 19.

A former standout and state champion at Fort Smith Northside, Joe has averaged 15.2 points per game and shot 37.8 percent from 3-point range in two seasons with the Razorbacks. As a freshman, Joe set the program’s single-season record for 3-pointers made with 113 while shooting 41.4 percent.

He was named to the SEC All-Freshman Team after averaging 13.9 points and 1.5 steals per game.

Despite missing six games as a sophomore due to a knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery on Feb. 4, Joe made 94 3s in 2019-20. He attempted 10.6 3-pointers per game last season (up from 8.0 in 2018-19) and his 275 attempts were tied for ninth-most in college basketball, according to SportsReference.

Arkansas was 1-5 without Joe last season and 19-7 with him in the lineup.

In six games after returning from injury, Joe averaged 20 points, shot 39 percent from the floor, 34.9 percent beyond the arc and made all 34 free throw attempts. He scored 16.9 points and grabbed 4.1 rebounds per game for the season.

Defensively, Joe took a team-high 18 charges (Jimmy Whitt was No. 2 with six) and was second on the team with 44 steals.

Joe is the second Razorbacks player to declare for the draft since the end of the college basketball season, joining junior guard Mason Jones, who indicated in a recent radio interview that there is a good chance he will remain in the draft.

The Razorbacks have had two players drafted since 2010 - Bobby Portis in 2015, Daniel Gafford in 2019 - and six since 2000. According to HogStats.com, 13 Razorbacks have remained in the draft before their senior season.

Six non-seniors have been drafted from Arkansas - Corliss Williamson in 1995, Darnell Robinson in 1996, Joe Johnson in 2001, Ronnie Brewer in 2006, Portis in 2015 and Gafford in 2019.

Williamson, Robinson and Brewer declared after their junior years, while the others were sophomores. Williamson, Johnson, Brewer and Portis were drafted in the first round, and Robinson and Gafford were second-round picks.

ADVERTISEMENT

Sponsor Content

COMMENTS - It looks like you're using Internet Explorer, which isn't compatible with the Democrat-Gazette commenting system. You can join the discussion by using another browser, like Firefox or Google Chrome.
It looks like you're using Microsoft Edge. The Democrat-Gazette commenting system is more compatible with Firefox and Google Chrome.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT