Providence’s Best Recruit In Years, Ricky Ledo, Declares For The NBA Without Even Playing A Game For The Friars

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Ahead of the 2012-2013 season, the Providence College basketball program landed one of the biggest recruits in the nation – Ricky Ledo. The hometown prep star (ranked No. 21 overall by ESPN) was supposed to help rebuild the Friars’ program and take them back to the NCAA Tournament – a place they haven’t been since 2004. But in early September, those plans were put on hold.

Due to academic eligibility issues, Ledo was not allowed to play this past season, though he was granted the ability to practice with the team. Providence finished with a record of 9-9 in the Big East, a five game improvement from the prior season, without Ledo. Surely adding Ledo to the mix for 2013-2014 would be enough to get the Friars over the hump – right?

It turns out they won’t have him then, either. Ledo announced he’ll be turning pro without ever playing a game for the school. Providence released an official statement from Ledo:

“I want to thank Providence College for the opportunity to be a Friar,” Ledo said. “As much as I wanted to play for the Friars and help the team win a BIG EAST championship, I felt I could not pass up this opportunity to enter the NBA Draft now. I had a great experience this season and will always remember the great atmosphere for our games at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. I appreciate all the support from the College, the fans, my teammates and the coaching staff, especially Coach Cooley. I love my teammates and I will always be a Friar.”

I understand the idea of striking when the iron is hot, but isn’t this a little much? NBA scouts will have to go off of his practice workouts and game tape from high school. 

Ledo is already 20 years old, so that could have something to do with this. If he stays another year, he’ll effectively be a junior, and we all know how the NBA loves younger talent. He may also think the 2013 draft class is weak, but that’s just speculation.

Current mock drafts have Ledo going in the middle of the second round. Couldn’t he improve his stock with a great year for the Friars?

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Matt is a Co-Founder at College Spun. He can be reached at matt@collegespun.com.