LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Tyler Ulis added his name to the list of Kentucky Wildcats entering the NBA draft. Ulis joined Freshmen Jamal Murray and Skal Labissierre in declaring for the draft, and like those two, he will sign with an agent, ending any chance of returning to Lexington.
The 5'9" Sophomore averaged 17 points and 7 assists this season and was named SEC Player of the Year and SEC Defensive Player of the Year. The only other Wildcat so honored was Anthony Davis.
Ulis said it was not an easy decision, especially with the talent coming in next season.
"There’s definitely hesitation going out the way we did," said Ulis. "We didn’t win it last year and we didn’t win it this year and I always wanted a national title. With those guys coming in it would be a lot of fun playing with them, throwing lobs to the two guards and the bigs coming in, but like I said, I feel like this is what is best for me and my family."
"I expected two years at the least," Ulis continued. "Last year, I knew the team we had and the way my body was, I wasn’t prepared yet. But this year, I had a plan before the season started and I feel like I’ve done most of it for the most part, besides winning the national title. I feel like, like I said, this is my time."
John Calipari had always scoffed at those who said he'd have Ulis around for four years, telling him not to come to UK if he wanted to be a four-year point guard.
"I still remember the comments when we signed Tyler: ‘Cal finally got himself a four-year point guard!’, said Calipari. "After two years, at his size, projected as a middle first-rounder - it’s truly an amazing story in itself. I’m going to miss him dearly because now it appears that all the coaching will fall back on my lap."
"I’ve coached a lot of great leaders and great point guards in all my years of coaching. Tyler Ulis is the best floor general that I’ve ever coached. What I loved is he grew into that position. You couldn’t speed him up and you couldn’t slow him down unless he wanted to do one of those things. He coached the team this season as much as I did, and I’m proud to say that."
Ulis looks forward to joining his fellow Wildcat classmates in the National Basketball Association.
"Well, you know (Devin) Book(er), Karl-(Anthony Towns) and those guys still tease me every day about still being in college, still going to class, still being a college boy, but it will be fun to go up there in those levels and just play with the best people in the world."
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