Former Huskies Anxiously Await NBA Draft
June 27, 2006
SEATTLE - The players that elevated Washington basketball to the next level are now moving on to the next level -- the NBA.
All-America guard Brandon Roy has been unanimously projected as a lottery pick in Wednesday's draft. Most draft boards have him listed within the first six picks.
Forward Bobby Jones was mentioned as a potential first-round selection by one pundit and has routinely appeared in the second round of most mock drafts.
If both are selected Wednesday, it would mark the first time in 19 years that two players were drafted after capping their collegiate careers at Washington. The Huskies have not had multiple players selected since the NBA trimmed the draft to two rounds. The last time more than one Husky was selected was 1987 when Chris Welp (1st round, 16th overall, Philadelphia) and Phil Zevenbergen (3rd round, 50th overall, San Antonio) were picked.
Two players with ties to UW were selected last season, including Seattle Prep product Martell Webster who signed a letter of intent before applying for the NBA Draft directly out of high school. Webster was the No. 6 selection overall in 2005, picked by Portland.
Roy's projected first-round selection would mark the first time that Huskies are picked in the first round of consecutive drafts. Nate Robinson was the 21st pick overall in the 2005 NBA Draft. He was selected by Phoenix and immediately traded to New York.
Robinson had an eventful rookie year with the Knicks, highlighted by his winning performance in the Slam Dunk contest during the All-Star festivities. The 5-foot-9 guard totaled 9.3 points, 2.3 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game, while playing an average of 21.3 minutes.
The cadre of NBA-caliber players reflect the rise to national prominence of the Washington basketball program. Coach Lorenzo Romar assembled the talent to propel the Huskies to three consecutive NCAA Tournament berths, including Sweet 16 appearances in 2005 and 2006.
Roy, who posted the school's fourth-highest single-season scoring total and eighth-highest assist figure, was the Huskies' first Associated Press first-team All-American in 53 years. He was voted the 2006 Pac-10 Player of the Year by the conference's head coaches.
A product of Seattle's Garfield High School, Roy led UW with 666 points and 135 assists his senior season. He ranked second among Pac-10 players with a 20.2-point scoring average and was fourth among playmakers with 4.1 assists per game. The 20.2 points per game was the highest figure by a Husky since Chris Welp averaged 20.8 in 1987.
The 6-foot-6 guard possesses a remarkable all-around game. He finished among the Pac-10 leaders in eight of the 13 statistical categories the conference compiles. Along with second in scoring and fourth in assists, Roy ranked second in assist/turnover ratio (1.80), third in field goal percentage (50.8%), fifth in 3-point percentage (40.2%), fifth in free throw percentage (81.0%), ninth in steals (1.4) and 11th in rebounds (5.6). He led the team with 26 blocked shots, an average of 0.8 per game that ranked 11th in the conference.
The Huskies completed the season with a 26-7 record, finishing second in the Pac-10 with a 13-5 mark. Washington advanced to the Sweet 16 for the second straight season before being eliminated from the NCAA Tournament with a 98-92 overtime loss to No. 1 seed Connecticut on Mar. 24 in Washington, D.C.
Roy sparked a late-season run of eight consecutive wins and was rewarded with three consecutive Pac-10 Player of the Week awards between Feb. 13-27. That has been done only one other time in the Pac-10 over the course of one season, by Arizona State's Eddie House in 2000.
Roy registered 20 or more points in 19 games this season, including a UW record of nine consecutive 20-point performances. He averaged 23.0 points in three NCAA Tournament games, including 28 in an opening-round victory over Utah State.
Jones was Romar's first UW recruit. He signed with the Huskies during the spring of 2002, one month after Romar was hired.
The 6-foot-7 forward from Compton, Calif. concluded his solid UW career by averaging 10.4 points and 4.9 rebounds in his senior season.
An honorable mention All-Pac-10 team selection in 2006, Jones completed his career ranked 20th among the school's all-time scorers with 1,226 career points. His 134 career steals placed him fourth among all-time Huskies.
During three 2006 NCAA Tournament games, Jones scored 29 points and pulled down 14 rebounds.
Last summer, Jones played for the 12-man U.S. National Team that won the gold medal at the 2005 World University Games in Izmir, Turkey.
Another UW honorable mention All-Pac-10 selection has been conducting tryouts with NBA teams with a chance of being drafted. Jamaal Williams is a 6-foot-6 forward from Corona, Calif. He ranked second on the team and 14th among Pac-10 players with an average of 13.8 points per game. He was the league's sixth most accurate shooter at 49.6 percent.
The last time UW had three players picked was 1982 when Dan Caldwell (3rd round, 52nd overall, New York), Steve Burks (8th round, 180th overall, Seattle) and Kenny Lyles (9th round, 199th overall, Denver) were selected.
University of Washington 1st Round Draft Picks
Year Player Pick Team2005 Nate Robinson 21 Phoenix2005 #Martell Webster 6 Portland2002 %Dan Dickau 28 Sacramento1987 Chris Welp 16 Philadelphia1985 Detlef Schrempf 8 Dallas1953 Bob Houbregs 3 Milwaukee1948 Jack Nichols 12 Washington
# UW letter of intent signee who declared for the draft directly out of high school
% Played two seasons at UW before transferring to Gonzaga