SMU's Jarrey Foster, once projected as first-round pick, to declare for draft

SMU Mustangs junior Jarrey Foster told ESPN that he will declare for the 2018 NBA draft.

Foster said he will not hire an agent, preserving the option to return to school for his senior year pending the feedback he receives from NBA teams. He plans to attend the NBA scouting combine for interviews and a medical examination if invited.

The 6-foot-6 small forward averaged 13.2 points, 5.9 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.2 blocks in 32 minutes per game for SMU. He was in the midst of a breakout season when he suffered a partially torn ACL 19 games into the season in January, the second time in his career he tore a ligament in his left knee.

"This has been my dream ever since I started playing basketball," Foster told ESPN. "I felt like I was having a great year when I got hurt. I was going to declare no matter what. I've been thinking since then about whether I should or shouldn't enter the draft, and I came to the conclusion that it doesn't hurt to test the waters."

ESPN's 2018 mock draft projected Foster as a late-first-round pick before his injury. Foster told ESPN he is "way ahead of schedule" in his recovery process, already running on a zero-gravity treadmill, and likely will be cleared for basketball activity in August.

Foster could be a candidate for NBA teams to target in the second round, in hopes he can recover from his injury and regain his form.

"To stay in the draft, I would have to be confident that I will be drafted in a spot that I am in a good situation," Foster said. "If I can get into the second round, that would be ideal. I'm looking for a team that can work with me with what I'm going through, providing me with a protocol to help me out and get as strong as possible. I'm looking for the right situation, a team that will take care of me, put their time into me."