Indiana’s Cody Zeller declares for NBA draft
Indiana sophomore center Cody Zeller declared for the NBA draft on Wednesday.
“Attending and playing basketball for IU not only fulfilled my collegiate dreams, but it also has provided me with the opportunity to fulfill my lifelong goal of playing in the NBA,” Zeller announced in a press release. “While I will continue to pursue my degree in the future, I believe it is in my best interest to pursue my professional basketball career in the NBA next season.”
SI.com’s Chris Mannix had Zeller ranked 10th on his most recent Big Board, in mid-March, before the start of the NCAA tournament.
Let’s be blunt: Teams are scared of Zeller. “He has that great college player, lesser NBA player look to him,” a Western Conference GM said. Zeller is an excellent mid-range shooter with underrated athleticism that should make him a decent NBA defender. But general managers continue to bring up the short wingspan (6-8, according to DraftExpress) and the lack of a separation move that will make it difficult for Zeller to create his own shot.
Zeller, 20, averaged 16.5 points, 8.1 rebounds and 1.3 blocks for the Hoosiers, who lost to Syracuse in the Sweet 16. Zeller shot 56.2 percent from the field on the season, earning first-team All-Big Ten and second-team AP All-America honors.
Cody is the third Zeller brother with NBA aspirations. Tyler, 23, was selected by the Cavaliers with the No. 17 pick in the 2012 draft after spending four seasons at UNC. Luke, 26, went undrafted in 2009 after spending four seasons at Notre Dame but made his NBA debut for the Suns this season, appearing in 16 games before being released in February.
Indiana guard Victor Oladipo, also considered a draft lottery prospect, declared for the draft on Tuesday.