The NBA Draft is Thursday but for two former Big 12 student-athletes, it will be an emotional night for varied and bittersweet reasons.
Baylor’s Isaiah Austin learned over the weekend that his basketball career is over. Genetic testing by the NBA discovered that Austin has Marfan syndrome. Austin learned the news Saturday night. A 7-1 center/forward who played two years for the Bears, Austin was projected as a late first-round or second-round pick.
Joel Embiid, who played one season at Kansas, was projected as the potential No. 1 pick. Exactly where he gets selected is even more of a mystery because Friday morning Embiid underwent surgery for a stress fracture in the navicular bone in his right foot. He’s expected to miss three to four months. Embiid was sidelined for the last few games of his freshman season at KU by a stress fracture in his back.
Embiid will not attend the NBA Draft. Austin has been invited as a guest of NBA commissioner Adam Silver.