Anthony Black declares for NBA Draft, Temple transfer commits to the Hogs

(UA Athletics)

Arkansas freshman guard Anthony Black has made the announcement that Razorback fans have been dreading, but likely knew in their hearts was coming at any moment.

The star point guard who last month helped lead the Arkansas men’s basketball team to the Sweet 16 declared his intentions to enter the upcoming NBA Draft in a Wednesday appearance on NBA Today.

Black thanked his coaches, his teammates, and Razorback fans in his announcement.

“As I take my next step towards my dream and declare for the 2023 NBA Draft, I do so with so much gratitude for all of your support for all of your support in helping me to get to this point,” he said in a statement posted to his social media accounts. “I will continue to work as hard as I can to represent Arkansas in the best way and make you all proud.”

Coming into the season, Black was a consensus 5-star recruit for head coach Eric Musselman’s Hogs and most experts expected the point guard to be a one-year play for the Razorbacks. The 6-foot-7 freshman played a crucial role this year, leading the team in assists and steals, and finishing the season second in scoring average at 12.8 points per game.

“A 6’7 point guard, Anthony Black showed impressive creativity, pace, physicality and smarts operating out of ball screens,” said Jonathan Givony, draft analyst for ESPN. “He played more minutes than any freshman in college basketball, establishing himself as one of the best defenders in this draft class.”

Black is projected to be a lottery pick in the upcoming draft class, landing as high as No. 7 on recent mock draft boards.

Musselman congratulated Black for his achievement in a Tweet posted Wednesday,

“Thank you for choosing Arkansas,” he said. “We can’t wait to watch you at the next level.”

Black joins his teammates Nick Smith Jr., Ricky Council IV, and Devo Davis as members of the 2022-23 squad to declare for the draft, though Davis has said he won’t sign with an agent to leave the door open to return to the team next year.


Arkansas lands Temple Transfer Khalif Battle

Just before Black’s announcement on Wednesday, a coveted player in the transfer portal announced his intentions to join the Razorbacks’ roster for next season.

Temple transfer guard Khalif Battle announced on Twitter that he has committed to sign with the Hogs.

The 6-foot-5 guard, rated as the No. 10 player in the transfer portal this year, averaged nearly 18 points per game for Temple, shooting 41% from the field, 35% from 3 point range, and over 89% from the free-throw line.

Battle joins Washington transfer guard Keyon Menifield and Houston wing Tramon Mark in Musselman’s transfer class that currently ranks No. 1 nationally on On3.com’s team transfer portal rankings.