Reports: Thon Maker plans to enter NBA Draft

It appears Thon Maker won’t make a college cameo after all.

Maker, one of the top-ranked players in the 2016 recruiting class, will try to enter this year’s NBA Draft, according to multiple reports. The 7-foot forward, who has long been a priority target for Indiana — and a list of other high-major programs — will now wait and see if the NBA deems him eligible for its upcoming draft. NBA rules require draft prospects to be at least 19 years old and a year removed from high school to be eligible for selection.

Maker, who currently lives in Canada and turned 19 in February, could have a good case to make.

Born in Sudan and raised in Australia, Maker came to the United States as an eighth-grader. He landed first in Louisiana before playing his freshman and sophomore years in Virginia. Maker then relocated and has been in Canada for the past two years.

Maker visited Bloomington last March, and there were reports last spring indicating that he could reclassify to the 2015 class and join a college program midway through the season. Maker ultimately decided to remain in the 2016 class and play his final prep season with younger brother Matur, a 6-10 forward considered to be a four-star recruit in the 2017 class. Matur also has an IU offer.

Along with Indiana, Thon Maker had been considering Kansas, Arizona State, Notre Dame, St. John’s and UNLV.

With a four-man recruiting class set to arrive this summer, Indiana does not currently have any available scholarships for next season. However, Troy Williams and Thomas Bryant are candidates to declare for the NBA Draft in the coming days.

Last week, IU coach Tom Crean extended an offer to junior college forward Freddie McSwain.