NEWARK, N.J. -- Former University of Texas basketball standouts Jordan Hamilton, Cory Joseph and Tristan Thompson will look to have their names called during Thursday night's NBA Draft at Prudential Center. ESPN will provide start-to-finish coverage of the draft beginning at 6 p.m. Central (7 p.m. Eastern).
Most mock drafts predict both Thompson and Hamilton to be selected in the first round of Thursday's draft. Should this occur, it would mark the second straight year and third time in UT history that the Horns have had two players selected in the first round of the same draft. Avery Bradley (No. 19 pick by Boston) and Damion James (No. 24 pick by Atlanta, traded to New Jersey) were taken in last year's draft. Travis Mays (No. 14 pick by Sacramento) and Lance Blanks (No. 26 pick by Detroit) were taken in the 1990 NBA Draft.
Texas also hopes to have three players selected in the same draft for the second straight season and the third time in school history. Bradley, James and Dexter Pittman (No. 32 pick by Miami) were taken in last year's draft. LaMarcus Aldridge (No. 2 pick by Chicago, traded to Portland), P.J. Tucker (No. 35 by pick by Toronto) and Daniel Gibson (No. 42 pick by Cleveland) were taken in the 2006 NBA Draft.
Hamilton was a two-year player on the wing who finished his career ranked 31st in UT history in career scoring with 1,012 points in 70 career games (14.5 ppg). He earned consensus second-team All-America honors as a sophomore and was one of 10 finalists for the Oscar Robertson Trophy (USBWA National Player of the Year). Hamilton claimed second-team All-America honors from the USBWA and NABC and third-team All-America accolades from The Associated Press. He led the team in scoring (18.6 ppg) and ranked second on the squad in rebounding (7.7 rpg), double-doubles (eight) and minutes (32.2 mpg). Hamilton topped the 20-point mark in 15 of UT's 36 games last year.
Joseph started all 36 games during his one season in Austin and earned USBWA Freshman All-America Second Team honors. He also garnered All-Big 12 Honorable Mention and Big 12 All-Rookie Team accolades. Joseph led the team in assists (3.0 apg), steals (37), three-point field goal percentage (.413, 52-of-126) and minutes played (32.4 mpg). He ranked fourth on the squad in rebounding (3.6 rpg) and tied for fourth in scoring (10.4 ppg). Joseph reached double figures in scoring in 21 of UT's 36 games last year.
Thompson played in all 36 games (34 starts) during his one year with the Longhorns and was one of five finalists for the Wayman Tisdale Award (USBWA National Freshman of the Year). He also earned USBWA Freshman All-America First Team and Big 12 Conference Freshman of the Year accolades. Thompson led the team in rebounding (7.8 rpg), blocked shots (86), double-doubles (10) and field goal percentage (.546) and ranked second in scoring (13.1 ppg). His 86 blocks ranked fourth on the school single-season list and were the second-highest total by a UT freshman (record is 90 by Chris Mihm in 1997-98). Thompson reached double figures in scoring in 28 of UT's 36 contests last year.
Since the NBA Draft began in 1947, a total of 38 Longhorns have heard their names called on draft night. Texas has produced a total of 11 first-round selections and 11 second-round picks in program history. Raymond Downs, a sixth-round pick by St. Louis in 1957, was the first Longhorn to be drafted.
Texas has had 13 players drafted in the previous 12 years under head coach Rick Barnes (dating back to the 1999 Draft), including eight players selected in the last five years. UT has had seven first-round picks in the Rick Barnes era entering Thursday night's draft: Chris Mihm (2000), T.J. Ford (2003), LaMarcus Aldridge (2006), Kevin Durant (2007), D.J. Augustin (2008), Avery Bradley (2010) and Damion James (2010).
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