Thursday, May 5, 2005
Updated: May 6, 11:07 AM ET
Brown to announce decision Friday
Illinois junior guard Dee Brown, the Big Ten player of the year and The Sporting News' national player of the year, will declare for the NBA draft but not sign with an agent.
Brown will meet with the media Friday afternoon to discuss his decision.
Brown has told the Illini coaching staff that he's 99 percent sure he will return for his senior season, sources have told ESPN.com's Andy Katz. The sources said Brown wanted to see where he stood in the draft by attending a few workouts before the June 21 deadline to withdraw his name from entry.
The early-entry deadline is May 14.
Brown led the Illini to the national championship game and a 37-2 overall record, including 15-1 in the Big Ten. Brown was second on the team in scoring (13.3 ppg), second in assists (4.5) and led the team in steals (1.8). Illinois lost to North Carolina in the final.
Brown would be the second Illini guard to declare for the draft.
In recent weeks, Deron Williams said he will hire an agent and won't return for his senior season. Williams is projected to be a lottery pick while Brown would have to work his way into the first round. If Brown were to stay in the draft, Illini coach Bruce Weber would lose all three guards (Luther Head was a senior), and four of his five starters will have departed. James Augustine would be the only returning starter.