Indiana sophomore Kel’el Ware declares for the 2024 NBA draft

  • 03/26/2024 10:07 am in

Indiana sophomore Kel’el Ware will enter his name in the 2024 NBA draft.

Ware made the announcement on his Instagram account.

A native of North Little Rock, Arkansas, the 7-foot center averaged 15.9 points, 9.9 rebounds, 1.9 blocks and 1.5 assists for the Hoosiers during the 2023-24 season.

Ware was named to the Big Ten all-defensive team and was a second-team All-Big Ten selection by the media.

The 7-foot center, a 2022 McDonald’s All-American, transferred to Indiana last spring after a rocky first season at Oregon.

As a freshman for the Ducks, Ware started just four games and averaged 6.6 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 15.8 minutes per game.

Ware’s development at Indiana was one of the bright spots in an otherwise disappointing third season for Mike Woodson in Bloomington.

His numbers improved across the board at Indiana. Looking at his efficiency numbers on, Ware’s effective field goal percentage improved from 49.7 as a freshman to 61.2 as a sophomore.

On the defensive glass, his rebounding percentage grew from 21.9 to 26.1. He led the Big Ten in defensive rebounding percentage (28) and was fourth in block percentage (6.6).

Most early mock drafts for 2024 have Ware as a first-round pick. The deadline to declare for the 2024 NBA draft for underclassmen is midnight on Saturday, April 27. The deadline to withdraw from the draft and return to school is May 29.

The NBA draft lottery will take place on Sunday, May 12 and the draft combine begins Monday, May 13 in Chicago.

Indiana had two players – Jalen Hood-Schifino and Trayce Jackson-Davis – selected in the 2023 NBA draft.

Here’s Ware’s full statement, via Instagram:

“Thank you Indiana, it has been a pleasure to wear the cream and crimson and have an opportunity to play for the greatest fans in the world. I am so grateful for the experience. You have all welcomed me with open arms and allowed me to develop into the player I am.

“I would like to thank the coaching staff for trusting me, seeing my potential, and for pushing me to go harder every day, on and off the court. Thank you to Lo and Hailey for guiding me academically and allowing me to succeed. You never lost faith in me, I owe a lot of credit to you all.

“To my teammates who have become more like family, I’m thankful for how we have stuck together through the ups and downs of the season. Although this season didn’t go how any of us had planned, I wouldn’t trade the days with you all for anything. You are my brothers.

“Lastly, I’m grateful to my family back home for always keeping faith in me regardless of the distance. I can always feel the love and support no matter where you are. From road trips to AAU to flying to games now, you have always been there. To my girl, thank you for being by my side and keeping my head up.

“I love you all.”

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