Posted April 10, 2013

Indiana’s Cody Zeller declares for NBA draft

2013 NBA draft, Ben Golliver, Cody Zeller
Cody Zeller

Indiana’s Cody Zeller is set to become the third Zeller brother to play in the NBA. (Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

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.

A native of Indiana, Zeller is listed at 7 feet and 240 pounds. He ranks No. 6 on DraftExpress.com’s top 100 and No. 10 on Chad Ford’s top 100 at ESPN Insider.

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.

6 comments
nature boy ric f.
nature boy ric f.

Just last night Tyler Zeller scored 18 pts on the road against the Pacers.  Their older brother Luke also made the opening night roster of an NBA team although the Suns released him in February.  Their uncle also played in the NBA so it's definitely in his DNA.  Considering Cody put up much better stats as a freshman and sophomore than Luke did as a senior at Notre Dame and basically about the same #s as Tyler put up his senior year at UNC, there's not much debate that he has the greatest potential to succeed in the NBA.  Go read Glockner's follow up piece for those of you who feel like spewing ignorant BS about Cody being a bust because he supposedly has a short wing span (as if that were the only worthwhile criteria in evaluating a prospect). 

WilyCoyoteSuperGenius
WilyCoyoteSuperGenius

Pity the fool GM who wastes a draft pick on this stiff. He couldn't even carry the Hoosiers out of the Sweet Sixteen. I suspect he is coming out early because this is such a weak draft class. He should stay at Indiana for two more years and work on his strength and game.

John4
John4

Cody Zeller - what are you thinking about?  You're not ready for the NBA.  Another year or two at Indiana would do wonders for you development.  Why go pro after two years.  Hopefully he hasn't hired an agent, and will be able to change his mind and return to Indiana next year.  This declaration (like many) is way too soon.  

bigredhd
bigredhd

sorry Cody you wont amount to anything in the NBA, just ask Brian butch and Greg stiensma who were by far better than you. Your the wrong color

avoiceofreason
avoiceofreason

@bigredhd If you're going to spew racism, at least use proper grammar. *You're not your. Thanks buddy.