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Two Jayhawks Earn NBA Draft Combine Invites



LAWRENCE, Kan. ( – KU basketball is set to be well-represented at the NBA Draft Combine. In a little bit over a week, NBA executives and personnel will be in Chicago for the event and two Jayhawks will be competing. On Friday afternoon, the NBA announced the official list of invitees for the combine and the duo of Kevin McCullar and Johnny Furphy were invited.

In the latest NBA Mock Draft from CBS Sports, Furphy is projected as a mid-first round pick. He is projected to go No. 18 overall to the Orlando Magic. McCullar is projected as a late first round pick in the same mock draft. He is projected to go No. 24 overall to the New York Knicks. Both players will have the opportunity to improve their draft stock at the combine.

McCullar was named First Team All Big 12 for his level of play during the season. He led the Big 12 in scoring during the regular season with 18.3 points per game. He shot 45.4 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from 3. He also notched 6.0 rebounds per game this season. McCullar, who was also named a semifinalist for the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year award, averaged 1.5 steals per game this season.

McCullar was in and out of the lineup for KU during the heart of conference play due to a bone bruise on his knee. He missed multiple games at the end of conference play but returned for KU’s Senior Night matchup with K-State, where he aggravated the injury late in the game during KU’s eventual blowout win. He tried to play against Houston but only managed a half of action. It was the final game he played in during his KU career. At KU’s end of season banquet, Bill Self said that McCullar underwent a small procedure on his knee.

Furphy started the season as a reserve coming off the bench, but earned a starting role in mid-January. When he was inserted into the starting lineup, Furphy hit the ground running. Over his first seven starts, KU went 5-2 and the freshman averaged 14.4 points per game on 60.7 percent shooting from the field and 51.5 percent shooting from 3. He also chipped in with 6.9 rebounds and 1.3 assists in his 32 minutes per game.

Things changed for Furphy to end the season, though, and it all started with KU’s road defeat to K-State in which the freshman shot 2-for-7 from the field. Over the final 12 games of the season, KU went 5-7. Furphy averaged 9.9 points per game on 37 percent shooting from the field and 24 percent shooting from 3 with 6.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists to his name in 32 minutes per game.

As a freshman, Furphy averaged 9.0 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.0 assists in 24.1 minutes per game. After the season, Furphy was named Honorable Mention All Big 12 and he was also named to the Big 12 All-Freshman team. Furphy was the fifth KU player to be named to the Big 12 All-Freshman Team that started in 2019, joining Devon Dotson (2019), Christian Braun (2020), KJ Adams (2022) and Gradey Dick (2023).

Furphy has until May 29 to withdraw from the draft if he picks to return to KU.