Cliff Omoruyi will test the waters of the NBA while maintaining his eligibility for next season.
On Thursday, the Scarlet Knight big man posted to Instagram announcing that he will declare for the 2023 NBA Draft but will not hire an agent.
“We are thrilled for Cliff to explore the opportunity of declaring for the 2023 NBA Draft,” head coach Steve Pikiell said in a statement. “Cliff has become the ultimate ambassador for Rutgers on and off the basketball court and we will support him and his family through this exciting journey.”
Rutgers has seen this process in previous years. Ron Harper Jr., Geo Baker, and Caleb McConnell all went through the draft process at one point but decided to return to school. Harper Jr. went through the process twice and decided to stick it out the second time around. He is now part of the Toronto Raptors’ organization.
This season, Omoruyi was selected as a Second Team All-Big Ten member by coaches, as well as All-Defensive Team. He averaged 13.2 points and 9.6 rebounds per game. Omoruyi added 2.1 blocks and shot 50.7% from the field.
On Wednesday, Jalen Miller entered the transfer portal. With the incoming freshmen counting toward scholarships, this put Rutgers at the 13-scholarship mark, which is the limit. If Omoruyi were to keep his name in the draft, this would open up one spot.
Omoruyi will have until May 31 to decide if he will pull his name out of the NBA Draft and return to Piscataway.