LINCOLN–(NU Athletics Mar. 21)–Nebraska freshman Bryce McGowens (Pendleton, S.C.) announced Monday that he is declaring for the 2022 NBA Draft and will sign with an agent.
McGowens, who was named the Big Ten Newcomer of the Year by the Associated Press, averaged a team-high 16.8 points and 5.2 rebounds per game during the 2021-22 season en route to third-team All-Big Ten honors from both the coaches and the media.
“Bryce told our staff that he has decided to declare for the NBA Draft,” Nebraska Coach Fred Hoiberg. “Since he arrived on campus last summer, Bryce has been diligent in putting in extra work, whether it is in the gym or in the weight room, and you could see it in his continued improvement over the course of the season. Bryce has put a lot of thought into this decision, and we will do everything we can to support him as he prepares for the NBA Draft and the start of his professional career.”
The 6-foot-7, 179-pound guard was ninth in the Big Ten in scoring this past season, while ranking among the conference leaders in free throws made (162, 1st), free throws attempted (195, sixth), free throw percentage (.831, third) and minutes played (33.3, 13th). His 16.8 scoring average ranks third among true freshmen nationally, as McGowens is one of five true freshmen averaging at least 15.0 points per game entering this week’s postseason action. He also ranks second among Big Ten freshmen in rebounding.
McGowens posted 11 games of at least 20 points, including a season-high 29 points against both Sam Houston and Rutgers. He played his best basketball down the stretch, averaging 19.8 ppg in a 12-game stretch, including seven 20-point outbursts, before missing the regular season finale at Wisconsin with an injury. He was an eight-time Big Ten Freshman-of-the-Week, including five of the last six weeks of the season.
For the year, he set school freshman marks for highest season average (16.8), points (522), free throws made and attempted while ranking in the top 10 in field goals (160, 2nd), rebounds (161, 4th) and 3-pointers (40, 6th).
The 2022 NBA Draft will take place on Thursday, June 23, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.