Weeks past the deadline for early entries into the 2010 NBA Draft, Providence sophomore forward Jamine Peterson is going pro.
“After speaking to my family and my coaches, I came to this conclusion,” Peterson, a 6-6 Brooklyn native, told me on the phone just a few minutes ago.
After putting up 19.6 points and 10.2 rebounds per game this season, “Greedy” was considering leaving early for the NBA, but initially decided to stay in school. So for him to change his mind today is curious to say the least, especially with reports coming out of Providence that Peterson was dismissed from the Friars program for undisclosed reasons. By leaving school now, Peterson would have to play overseas or in the D-League before becoming eligible for the 2011 NBA Draft.
When I asked Peterson and his adviser about the reports, his adviser said there was “some truth” to them, but added this was more Jamine’s decision than one that was made for him. Peterson says he’s already received offers from teams in Italy, Greece, Spain and France.
Providence coach Keno Davis said in a press release, “Jamine Peterson has been dismissed from the men’s basketball team for a violation of team rules. Jamine had a productive season in 2009-10. However, regardless of his athletic accomplishments, it is essential to the integrity of the program that every student-athlete meets the high standards and expectations we have at Providence College.”
“The (Providence) program is great; the coaches are great,” Peterson said. “I was just basically looking to go into the NBA Draft, but they had me going in the second round. I’m focused on doing what I have to be a first-rounder in next year’s Draft, and I think I can do that overseas.”
Peterson was one of college basketball’s most unlikely success stories of 2009-10. He wasn’t highly recruited coming out of Notre Dame Prep (Fitchburg, Mass.), where he was overshadowed by teammate Michael Beasley, and redshirted the ’08-09 season at PC to improve his game. This season Greedy was the most productive frontcourt force in the Big East, as he and Luke Harangody were the only players in the conference to flirt with 20-and-10 averages.