LEX18 — Kentucky's Olivier Sarr has officially declared for the NBA Draft. He will not return to the Kentucky basketball program next season.
Sarr first made the announcement on his Instagram, writing, in part: "After years of hard work and dedication, I will be graduating and pursuing my professional career by declaring for the 2021 NBA Draft. I am so excited about what the future holds and ready to take on new challenges. I will forever be a part of #LaFamilia."
Sarr spent one season at Kentucky, following his decision to transfer from Wake Forest after three seasons. He'll end his collegiate career with 934 total points, 626 rebounds and 111 blocked shots.
Under John Calipari, Sarr averaged 10.8 points and 5.2 rebounds per game during the 2020-21 season. He had a team-high-tying two games with 20 or more points, notched a team-high three double-doubles on the season, and ranked third on the team in scoring as well as in rebounding. He was the only Wildcat to start all 25 games during the 2020-21 season.
“I am so happy for Olivier and excited to see what he does with this next step in his journey,” UK head coach John Calipari said in a press release. “Olivier really improved himself this season, yet he still has a ton of room to grow and has the type of skills that translate to that next level. At the end of the day, you are talking about a 7-foot skilled big man who can shoot it and block shots. He is only going to get better.
“I wish Olivier had the opportunity this past year to enjoy a normal season here with a summer to build additional strength, but he had a plan and stuck with it throughout this whole process," Calipari added. "He has a maturity about him that will serve him well entering the NBA. Olivier has my full support, and I can’t wait to watch him tackle this next phase of his career.”
Off the court, Sarr was tabbed to the SEC Community Service Team. He was also one of 30 candidates for the Senior CLASS Award, which honors student athletes who excel in four core areas: character, competition, classroom and community service. Sarr is expected to graduate from the University of Kentucky this May with a degree in communication.
Sarr joins his former teammates Terrence Clarke and BJ Boston in declaring for the NBA Draft with no intention of returning to Lexington next season. Isaiah Jackson has also declared for the Draft, but he has not hired an agent, meaning he could return to UK for a sophomore season if he doesn't get the feedback he's looking for from the league.
Devin Askew and Cam'Ron Fletcher are both transferring from the Kentucky program. Askew will play at Texas next season; Fletcher has not yet made an announcement regarding his future team. Dontaie Allen, Jacob Toppin and Lance Ware have each stated they will return to UK next year. No decisions have been announced from Davion Mintz or Keion Brooks Jr. at this time.
The 2021 NBA Draft will take place on July 29, while the NBA Draft Combine will be held from June 21-27.
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