Gregory Payan/Associated Press
Howard University big man Makur Maker has withdrawn his name for consideration for the 2021 NBA draft, per ESPN’s Olgun Uluc.
The 20-year-old averaged 11.5 points, 6.0 rebounds in 24.0 minutes over two games for Howard. The Bison’s season was limited to just five games because of health and safety concerns related to COVID-19.
The 6’11”, 235-pound big man was ranked 16th in ESPN’s Top 100 list of the class of 2020 boys’ high school basketball prospects. He was given a 94 grade on a 100-point scale and had offers from Kentucky, Kansas and others.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski also gave a picture of a long and winding road that Maker needed to take to get to the draft:
“He was born in Kenya to South Sudanese parents, emigrated to Perth, Australia, in 2001 and moved to California in 2015. He joined his cousins (Detroit Pistons forward) Thon and Matur Maker in Ontario, and was home-schooled from 2016 to 2018 while attending showcases in the United States. He first started to receive NBA attention at the Pangos All-American Camp and Adidas Nations in the summer of 2017.
“Makur Maker’s recruiting profile increased with his play on the summer AAU circuit with Dream Vision, averaging 14.7 points, 7.9 rebounds and one block in 26 minutes per game. He shot 73 percent from two-point range, 30 percent from three and 61 percent from the free-throw line.“
Tom Westerholm of MassLive.com broke down what makes Maker stand out:
“At nearly 7-feet tall, Maker is intriguing due to his mobility and fluidity. He’s a good athlete with an uncommon skill set for his size—a solid handle, a competent three-point shot and a good ability to get out in transition quickly. Defensively, his mobility is promising, since modern bigs are expected to move quickly laterally and help contain opponents on the perimeter.”
Although he won’t be entering the draft next year, he can raise his profile with a full year at Howard for his sophomore campaign. The talent and potential are there for Maker, who can eventually emerge as a first-round draft prospect given his athleticism and versatility on both ends.