Hamidou Diallo Reportedly to Return to Kentucky for Sophomore Season

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistMay 25, 2017

Team Drive''s  Hamidou Diallo #3 in action against Team Clutch in the Under Armour Elite 24 game on Saturday, August 20, 2016 in Brooklyn, NY.  (AP Photo/Gregory Payan)
Gregory Payan/Associated Press

Hamidou Diallo has withdrawn his name from consideration for the 2017 NBA draft and will return to the University of Kentucky next season, according to ESPN.com's Jeff Goodman and CBSSports.com's Gary Parrish.

Diallo had until 11:59 p.m. ET on Wednesday night to make a call, and he relayed confirmation of his decision shortly after midnight: 

The 18-year-old enrolled at Kentucky in January and practiced with the Wildcats, but he never appeared in a game. However, the decision to enroll made him draft eligible since he will turn 19 years old this year.

Diallo proceeded to declare for the draft without an agent, and he tested the waters when he attended the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago.

And while Diallo raised some eyebrows when he recorded a combine-best vertical jump of 44.5", questions remained regarding his polish since he didn't participate in five-on-five scrimmages.

Ultimately, those concerns prevented prospective employers from reaching out and expressing serious interest in Diallo as a first-round selection. In fact, hoops insider Adam Zagoria and The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski both reported Wednesday that Diallo didn't receive a first-round promise from a team drafting in the 20s—which sealed his decision to return to school.

Zagoria added that the Brooklyn Nets and Utah Jazz were his most serious suitors, but both opted against making guarantees before the midnight deadline.

"Just isn't enough of a body of work to make a commitment on him now," one general manager told Wojnarowski

Looking ahead, Diallo has a chance to boost his stock now that he'll be afforded a chance to shine in the spotlight for the Wildcats and head coach John Calipari.

According to ESPN.com's Chad Ford, Diallo could fall somewhere between pick Nos. 10-15 in 2018 should things proceed as planned.

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