Ex-College Basketball Player Returns To Hardwood After Minor League Baseball Stint
Basketball is Stephen Lumpkins’ first love, but it took him a year away from the game to fully realize that.
Lumpkins played basketball for American University for three seasons, including one where he was a Second Team All-League performer. That was before he was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 13th round of the 2011 MLB Draft (Also of note: He was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2010, but opted to play another year of college basketball first).
He decided to try his hand at pursuing a pro career and pitched for two seasons in the Rookie Arizona League.
Those two seasons away made him realize basketball is what he wants to do, and he will be returning to American University for his senior season, according to ESPN. Lumpkins will be allowed to return to college basketball, pending approval from the Patriot League, and will have one year of eligibility remaining.
Lumpkins’ case also brings up an interesting debate; should he even be allowed to play? He received a $150,000 bonus from the Royals, so regaining amateur status seems a bit unusual:
“@JayBilas: AU’s Stephen Lumpkins returns to college hoops: $150K bonus from Royals, but not a pro. Enes Kanter was a pro. Get it?”