Duke freshman Jabari Parker has confirmed expectations, announcing his intentions to enter the 2014 NBA Draft.
Parker met with head coach Mike Krzyzewski earlier in the week to discuss his future and whether or not he would stay for another season with the Duke Blue Devils. After careful consideration, the Blue Devils' star forward felt the move to the next level would be the best decision for his future.
"Jabari could not have been better. He is the epitome of what you would want a basketball player to be - outstanding everyday on the practice court and in the classroom and a very humble young man," Krzyzewski told Duke sports information. "He had a fantastic freshman year and is so deserving of the opportunity to play in the NBA and follow his dream. It was an honor for us to have him in our program and he will always be a part of our family here at Duke. We will be on the Jabari Parker team the rest of our lives and we know Jabari and his family will be on the Duke team for the rest of their lives."
Parker led Duke in scoring, averaging 19.1 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.2 blocks and 1.2 assists per game as a freshman. He received first team All-America honors from Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NABC, USBWA and the Wooden Award.
During his first and only season as a member of the Duke basketball team, Parker became just the 12th freshman in ACC history to lead his team in scoring and rebounds. Parker also became only the fifth freshman in school history to record a 30-point game, his coming against North Carolina at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
"Coming out of high school, I knew that Duke was going to be a great fit for me and it ended up being one of the best experiences of my life," said Parker. "I cannot thank Coach K enough for all his love and guidance. I had the opportunity to pick his brain throughout the year and it really paid off. I have learned how to be a man on and off the court and to be strong mentally going into practices and games. I appreciate him for challenging me to be better each and every day."
The outstanding freshman becomes the third Duke player in the last four years to enter the NBA Draft early.