NCAA officials adopted a proposal in January of 2016 that allows college basketball players to better assess their likelihood of success in the NBA without jeopardizing their college eligibility. By declaring for the NBA Draft, Wilder is able to attend workouts scheduled by NBA teams and, if invited, is eligible to compete in the NBA Draft Combine on May 9-14 in Chicago.
Players have until . . .
“After many talks with my parents and Coach Hawkins, I have made the decision to enter my name in the 2017 NBA Draft. “By doing this I will be able to get feedback regarding the level of interest that the NBA teams have in me and information about the areas of my game that I need to improve. I will not be hiring an agent,” Wilder said.
“I am on track to graduate this December, during my senior season, and I am looking at this opportunity as a win-win situation for me. I truly believe that our team next year will compete for a Mid-American Conference Championship, and by entering my name in the NBA Draft, I will receive a valuable prospective from people in the NBA regarding my basketball future, feedback that will also help me to be a better contributor to next season’s Bronco team.”
“This is a great opportunity for Thomas,” said WMU head coach Steve Hawkins. “Thomas is going to get very valuable insight on his future while not jeopardizing his eligibility here at Western Michigan. We’re going to support him in every way possible to help him achieve his dreams.”
Wilder has been one of the most dominating point guards in the Mid-American Conference the past two seasons. As a junior this past year, he averaged 19.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.3 steals per game, becoming Western Michigan’s first First Team All-Mid-American Conference selection since 2014. He also had the best three-point shooting percentage in the conference at .444. As a sophomore, Wilder led the MAC from start to finish in conference scoring averaging 20.4 ppg on league games on his way to earning Second Team All-MAC honors.