“I’ve been preparing most of my life to join the NBA, and that time has come for me now: After an unforgettable year at the University of Oklahoma, I will enter the June NBA draft and fully immerse myself in the pursuit of a pro basketball career.”
Young took the college world by storm with his Steph Curry like style, and finished leading the nation in scoring (27.4 ppg) and assists (8.8 apg). The first player in college basketball history to do that.
During Young’s senior year of HS, he averaged 42.6 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game while also shooting at a 48.9% clip. Coming into college, Trae was a five-star recruit, a McDonald’s All-American, and a member of the USA Basketball Select-Team. Despite all of that, he was not as highly touted or hyped up as other freshmen like Marvin Bagley III, DeAndre Ayton, or Michael Porter Jr.
In fact, the Big 12’s coaches named another freshman Mohamad Bamba, as the preseason freshman of the year, not Trae. But that’s not all, Young did not receive a single preseason All-American vote either. Sadly, we here at The Big Lead missed on him as well, as he wasn’t even included in our fan vote post titled the 50 Best Players in College Basketball. Young is going to be a top-ten NBA pick this June but his name did not appear on most preseason mocks…unbelievable.
Speaking of the Draft, you can be sure that NBA GM’s won’t miss on the guy being called Steph Curry-lite. The comparisons are natural, as Young, like Curry, is fun to watch, electrifying, and bombs long 3’s from everywhere. He is also a terrific passer, and plays a fan-friendly style that entertains.
It will be interesting to see where Young goes in the Draft. If anything, because of how bad the college pundits missed on him, he might even go a spot or two higher than he should strictly based on the Steph Curry effect. No GM wants to be the one that missed out on the next Steph.
In any event, after all the whiffs on this kid, he made sure to hit a grand slam this season and has put himself on everyone’s map. You can tell the doubters motivated him…
“I was never the big leaper, the dunker, the long and athletic kid who looked the part of a traditional basketball star. Truth be told, I wasn’t even considered a top guard coming out of my recruiting class.
But I was the kid who worked relentlessly, stayed longest in the gym and played with a chip on my shoulder. I wanted to be considered among the great players. I wanted to belong.”
These are the kind of stories that I love. Young stayed in his hometown, worked his butt off, and is now going to be a top-10 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft. Congrats to Young on a great season and I look forward to seeing him ball in the NBA.