University of Kansas

KU junior forward Dedric Lawson to enter 2019 NBA Draft

Kansas junior forward Dedric Lawson has decided to enter his name in the 2019 NBA Draft, he reported Monday on Twitter.

“First I would like to thank God for blessing me with the talent and opportunities to play the game I love. I would also like to thank coach (Bill) Self, KU coaching staff, academic advisors and the best fans in the country from the University of Kansas for allowing me to recreate myself and display my talents. After prayer and discussion with my family I will pursue my life’s dream by declaring for the NBA Draft. I will begin my preparation for the NBA immediately. RockChalk Jayhawk for Life!” he added on Twitter.

Lawson, a 6-9 native of Memphis, averaged 19.4 points and 10.3 rebounds per game last season, earning first-team all-Big 12 honors and consensus third-team All-America honors.

“Dedric informed me shortly after the season of his intentions to declare for the NBA Draft,” KU coach Bill Self said Monday. “He had a chance to go home and visit with family about this and we totally support his decision and wish him nothing but the best moving forward.”

”Dedric came here, sat out last season, and had only one year to participate in competition. Dedric had such a great year. There are not very many players who have played at Kansas, or players that I have coached, that average 19 points and 10-plus rebounds in a season. I feel like it is in his best interest to use this year as a springboard into his professional future. He could not have represented our program, the University or his family any better than how he did. All Jayhawk fans should be excited for him.”

Lawson was the first Jayhawk to average a double-double since All-America Thomas Robinson averaged 17.7 points and 11.9 rebounds in 2011-12. The 2019 Big 12 Newcomer of the Year and unanimous All-Big 12 First Team selection, Lawson is the only player in the league who averaged a double-double.

In all, Lawson had 22 double-doubles in 2018-19 which tied for second nationally and third on KU’s single-season list. Lawson was a three-time Big 12 Player of the Week and five-time league newcomer of the week this past season.

Lawson’s brother, K.J., on Friday announced plans to enter his name in the transfer portal and continue his career elsewhere.

KU currently has three scholarships to give in recruiting to fill vacancies created thus far by the Lawson brothers as well as Charlie Moore, who has indicated plans to transfer.

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Gary Bedore covers all aspects of Kansas basketball for The Star — the current team as well as former players and coaches and recruiting. He attended KU and was born and raised in Chicago, as well as Lisle, Ill.