The Dagger - NCAAB

Since Sunday is the final day that early-entry candidates who have not signed with an agent can withdraw from the NBA draft and retain their college eligibility, I spoke to an NBA scout about some of the top undecided prospects.

His opinions on eight of those prospects are below. I granted him anonymity so he could speak candidly about each of the players, their draft stock and whether they would be better off staying in the draft or returning to school.

1. Shelvin Mack, G, Butler: "I don't know if he can get a guarantee at the end of the first round, but if he stays and has a good three weeks or four weeks, he can definitely move into the later first round. He's a very high character kid, very coachable, he can shoot the ball. He can definitely be successful in an up-and-down system as well as running pick-and-roll. And he's not bad on defense I just think he's not going to get a promise in the first round. For him to understand the process is very important, but he could definitely benefit from another year in school."

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft: 25 to 40

2. Ashton Gibbs, G, Pittsburgh: "With Jamie Dixon, you always put yourself in position to win. He needs to really work on his game, do the summer circuit, go to the big shoe company camps and work out in front of NBA guys. There's no rush for him to come out. In my opinion, it would be a crazy decision. His lack of running a team hurts him a little bit. He needs to definitely stay another year. I doubt he'd be drafted. He could have some good workouts and anything could happen, but I think he's an afterthought to some of these teams. Why draft him at 52 when I can draft a European with some upside, stash him over there?"

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft: 45 to undrafted

3. Klay Thompson, G, Washington State: "I don't know about his character. I know he's had a couple issues here and there. But as far as him as a player, he's got great size, he can make shots, you can run him off screens. I think he's a kid that will go 20 to 35. I'm really a big fan of his. You can run him off screens for days. He can space your defense out. He can drive on long closeouts. He's a good player, a very good player."

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft: 20 to 35

4. Terrence Jones, F, Kentucky: "Jones definitely has the size, athletic ability and ability to score. I've had him in the top ten all year. He has some character issues and you have to look at that strongly, but I don't see him going past 20 even if his character becomes an issue. He has a lot of ability."

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft: 8 to 20

5. DeAndre Liggins, G, Kentucky: "It's a weird situation. He didn't have a great year individually, but look at his perspective. They've got 100 all-Americans coming in next year. Where's he going to fit? ... I would probably rate him 35 to undrafted, but he's definitely good enough to make a roster. He's a guy I'd put a year into. I'd put him in the D-League, let him develop and see how good he is. He can really guard people, he's good off the dribble and his shooting will develop even if it's not there yet ... He's one of those guys who may have to do it the Bruce Bowen way. He may have to go overseas, may have to go to the D-League and fight his way out."

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft: 35 to undrafted

6. Tobias Harris, F, Tennessee: "Tobias really needs to develop a little bit more. He's a little bit of an undersized four man to be honest. I don't know how he develops. For him to make it, he's going to have to be Ryan Gomes, and he's just not. He's got some talent for sure, but I think he'd be making a mistake."

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft:15 to 30

UPDATE: Tennessee announced Friday evening Harris will enter the draft

7. Ralph Sampson II, F, Minnesota: "He has some upside for sure. He was so clumsy and uncoordinated in high school that I thought he'd be a guy who rides the bench at Minnesota, but he's actually good. He has NBA three-point range. He's more of a four now because he can step out. He's not bad. He can post you up, take you outside, take you inside. He might not be as talented as Jeff Green, but he's got some Jeff Green in him."

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft:40 to undrafted

8. John Shurna, F, Northwestern: "He's an interesting one. He reminds me a little of Matt Carroll, a big wing with good length that can shoot the ball. He's actually a good player. His shot is funky looking, but he's a very effective, efficient shooter. He'll be in that New Jersey workout this weekend. I think he can definitely make a roster. If I was a team at 40, I'd promise him. But with the NBA lockout looming, it might not matter.  He's not going to be a first-round pick. Even if you get a one-year guarantee, what's that worth if the season starts in February? You could have been doing all that at Northwestern."

Where he'll go if he stays in the draft:40 to undrafted

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