Iman Shumpert “50-50″ on returning to Georgia Tech

Iman Shumpert said today if he’s projected to be a second-round pick in the NBA draft he will likely return to Georgia Tech.

Most NBA mock drafts have Shumpert as a second-round pick at best. Though he’s an avid social media participant, Shumpert said he doesn’t put much stock in mock drafts on the internet. He was a second-team All-ACC player after averaging 17.3 points and 5.9 rebounds last season. A junior, he led Tech in almost every significant offensive category. He also made the conference’s defensive team.

He reached his decision after spending spring break with his family in their hometown near Chicago. He said his father, mother, brothers, high school coach, teammates and former Tech coach Paul Hewitt helped him. However, he hasn’t hired an agent, which means he can remove his name from the eligibility list.He said he’s known for a while that he was going to make himself eligible, whether or not he had a good year.

The news of his decision broke yesterday when Shumpert tweeted it during the press conference to introduce new coach Brian Gregory. Shumpert said he only tweeted because he was receiving a lot of tweets and facebook messages asking him if was leaving school. His father submitted the form earlier in the day so he thought the news was already out. He said he doesn’t regret sending the tweet because he didn’t mean the timing as a shot at Gregory or the program.

Gregory will help Shumpert set up workouts for teams around his class schedule. Former teammate Gani Lawal, who put his name after his sophomore season only to return, advised Shumpert to stay in school and finish the semester. Remaining in good academic standing will also ensure that Tech isn’t doubly penalized when the NCAA’s next Academic Progress Rate comes out.

He said he’s going to work to improve his long-range jump shot before auditioning for NBA teams. He hit 40.6 percent of his field goals, but 27.8 percent of his 3-pointers last season.

If he returns, Shumpert said he’s excited about playing Gregory’s up-tempo offense.The two met Monday and again today before Shumpert practiced his free-throw shooting.

“I think I would fit great,” he said. “Coach was talking about guards making plays. I don’t feel uncomfortable in any offense. As long as you trust the offense and guys around trust the offense guys will make plays.”

– Doug Roberson, AJC

48 comments Add your comment


March 29th, 2011
5:19 pm

Better get that degree son..NBA is not in your future..Overseas, perhaps.

Jacket Man

March 29th, 2011
5:33 pm

Iman needs to speak with Javaris Crittenton before he makes his final decision…


March 29th, 2011
5:37 pm

DOUG! Teach me how to DOUGIE!


March 29th, 2011
5:46 pm

I think he will be back, and Royal will be here as well.

Tech Man

March 29th, 2011
5:48 pm

It seems as if Shumpert’s coming back, given his 1st round or GT attitude. But it doesn’t hurt to test the waters at all. Come on back to Tech and see if you can make yourself a 1st rounder next year. After last season, the Jackets need all hands on deck!

Jacket Fan

March 29th, 2011
5:49 pm

I think the best thing for him to do is forgo his senior season, if he doesn’t see himself as the ‘go-to-guy’ for Tech. Personally, I think his style of play has limited the progression of players like Udofia, Rice and Oliver.


March 29th, 2011
5:53 pm

Jacket Man…lol i was thinking the same thing!
this has “javaris Crittenton 2″ written all over it
Stay in school…pretty please!

Fly Swatter

March 29th, 2011
5:56 pm

Travis Leslie > Iman Shumpert x 10!!!! Keep thinking otherwise!

Robert Barron

March 29th, 2011
6:14 pm

@Jacket Fan
Shumpert didn’t limit anyone’s progression.
Once Oliver started hiting his shots, Iman got Tech’s only triple-double ever in SEC play.
Oliver really impressed me with how he worked at other areas of his game until his shot came around. Unfortunately the flu and an injury prevented a different end to his and Tech’s season.
The only addition by subtraction we need has already been made.

Robert Barron

March 29th, 2011
6:20 pm

ACC instead of SEC.
I’m reading “Dodd’s Luck” and how we got cheated out of the national championship in 1952 when we were 12-0 with a point differential of 325-59. Only Florida scored in double figures and we won the Sugar Bowl over Ole Miss 24-7.
Michigan State won both the AP and UPI NCs simply because there were more northern voters and no sense of fair play evidently.
Then the NCAA cheated us a second time by scaping the two platoon system Dodd was obviously the master of for the Nearderthal one platoon.
The coaches and ADs jealous of Dodd changed the rule and I think it stayed that way for about 8 years or so.


March 29th, 2011
6:34 pm

Whether he returns depends on who else declares, and how far he gets bumped down the totem pole by others. Declaring but no agent is the right move. Hope to see him back. Would love to see what some real coaching would do for his game.
@Jacket Fan — the only thing that held Udofia back is him not Iman.

Voice of Reason

March 29th, 2011
6:40 pm

Shumpert has a pretty high opinion of himself. Truth is, he ain’t that good. He goes into the draft, he’ll gethis feeling hurt. He stays and listens to a real coach, he might could raise his stock.

Paul in RDU

March 29th, 2011
6:42 pm

Someone needs to ask Shumpert how he is going to improve his game (and his financial oportunities) by not playing in 2011-12 after the NBA owners lock the players out for the season.
Lottery picks will be OK, but guys like Shumpert, who really need to work on some aspects of their game (such as, what position he is best suited to), will have problems.


March 29th, 2011
6:51 pm

We need you big boy! You can have a great year AND a better draft by staying, plus that degree will mean an awful lot in the future. NBA and a Tech diploma is pretty good stuff!


March 29th, 2011
7:01 pm

He played this exactly how he plays basketball- without a clue. How can he say he didn’t mean it as a shot towards Gregory. To announce on the same day is an insult to Gregory. But, its always been all about Iman. Sometimes, I wonder if he knows he has teammates or if he thinks its 1 on 5. Tremendous talent. Shame its been wasted.


March 29th, 2011
7:02 pm

In my opinion Shumpert is not that good at absketball. he is an unbelievable athlete! But in the NBA all he will see is great athletes.

I believe Jacket Man is correct, Crittenton all over again.

Delbert D.

March 29th, 2011
7:36 pm

Anybody notice in the spring football photo gallery the shot of Tevin Washington, a B-back and a tailback in I-formation?


March 29th, 2011
7:46 pm

Shumpert needs to learn to dribble first-he palms the ball all the time-oop

the NBA allows that!! Needs to come back- he will have Miller,Holsey and Royal as
big men in the lineup next year along with Rice instead of one big man and four

Supersize that order, mutt

March 29th, 2011
7:47 pm

Unexpected GOOD advice from Gani Lawal.


March 29th, 2011
7:49 pm

Shumperts biggest selling point is that he is one of the best defenders in the country. He is a decent offensive player as well but would probably need to improve his shot some before being coveted at the next level.


March 29th, 2011
7:52 pm

He’ll be back. He’s 3rd round or lower.

Tech Fan

March 29th, 2011
7:56 pm

Man, I can;t believe how many people who get on these sites are such piece’s of ish for the way they talk about a guy they don;t even know. If you are Tech Fans…..please, we will be better off without just pick another team.

Shump, you the dowhatever you feel is in your best interests..I would love to see you come back..your a great player and you know we would have a great team next year if you came back..but hey, if you can get a first roundy, go for it man!!!!

bye bye blewitt

March 29th, 2011
8:10 pm

If Shumpert improves his deep shot he is a first round pack. As it stands now, I think he falls to the second round. He is a great defender with good size and nice ball handling skills. All he needs is the right coach to help him put it all together. Stay in school Shump and your a sure first round pick next year.

Hayseed Dixie

March 29th, 2011
8:22 pm

What kind of person announces they’re leaving when the new coach is hired?

And them hems and haws about it afterwards?

No one cares that he’s going to the NBA to “get his”. Right on. Get yours, especially if you’re legit. Get paid. Come back and finish your degree later.

But the way he’s handled this screams “immature”, “not on the same page with anyone” , and/or knuckleheaded.

I think he needs to stay and grow up, it’s just will him doing so be a detriment to the team? Team first should be expected from “Tech Men”


March 29th, 2011
8:46 pm

Shumpert will be a great pro eventually. The reason it looked like his game isn’t as good as it should have been at times is because of coaching. He probably won’t make it as a point guard but he’s tall enough to play 2. With NBA lockout looming, he’ll make a wise decision and come back. It never hurts to test his status. He has to have a tremendous workout to get drafted in 1st round. Right now, he’s a mid to late 2nd rounder. It’s not worth going this year.


March 29th, 2011
8:55 pm

It could be a great senior year for you. With your leadership and excellent defensive skills already a part of your game, improving on your offensive skills can be one of the main things that you could focus on leading up to and during your senior year. Plus the added year in school will get you on track for your diploma. I look forward to seeing you in white and gold this next year…

IL Jacket

March 29th, 2011
9:01 pm

Shump, come on back man and work on your range and you will certainly be a guaranteed first round choice. I know you are getting good advice, but that wild card about the potential lockout is not to be ignored. It would be a great resume builder to be ACC POY. Whatever your decision, we wish you all the best. Go Jackets!!!

Ramblin On

March 29th, 2011
9:27 pm

I doubt Shump is a 1st rounder. Its a shame, this kid was a top 10 recruit out of high school, but hasn’t gotten a chance to get any better because he had no one coaching him. Hopefully BG can actually teach him something but from what a lot of people are saying his players don’t get any better under him either. Like Chris Wright, who was the best recruit ever to go to Dayton and his numbers have been the same the last 3 seasons, a big disappointment…Lets hope Shump comes back and gets his diploma cause ultimately that will be the best thing for him.


March 29th, 2011
10:10 pm

i noticed that, delbert. come back, shump!


March 29th, 2011
11:50 pm

LOL at these comments. I think if Shumpert comes back and becomes a more consistant perimeter shooter he will be a top 20 pick possibly lottery. Come back Shumpert!!


March 30th, 2011
12:08 am

Some of you severely overrate Iman. He shot a pitiful 40% from the floor this year for cryin out loud! The only reason he averaged 17 PPG is because he shot 15 times a game. He was wildly inconsistent but I blame most of it on Hewitt.

Stay for your senior year, Iman. I wanna see what you can do with a real coach. You have all the tools to be a solid NBA player. You need one more year.

William Casey

March 30th, 2011
1:24 am

Iman Shumpert is a solid player who needs to work on his shot. His game is “pro” in every other way. That being said, if he returns to Tech, he will be GT’s leader. He’ll be All-ACC. If GT improves significantly (which I think they will,) he’ll get a lot of the credit and his stock will rise. Contrast that with being at the end-of-the-bench for some pro team. Yes, there is the money and $ is important. Not knowing his family’s situation, I would never question his testing the waters. I will say that there really are some things more important than money as long as your family isn’t starving. Those VCU kids will remember these past weeks for the rest of their lives. And, the money will come.


March 30th, 2011
6:33 am

I really think he’s gonna come back…….


March 30th, 2011
6:55 am

Iman needs to come back. He will get his chance in the NBA.

Who cares (the original)

March 30th, 2011
8:04 am

He is not NBA ready. He does have an NBA game but his long range shot needs to improve.


March 30th, 2011
8:13 am

I’m one of your biggest fans. You’re not ready…not yet. Come back, get some good coaching. Work hard in class. You made a lot of good impressions on scouts last year. Keep it up and you will be a mid-first rounder next year.


March 30th, 2011
8:25 am

Iman is a very good player and there is a good chance he will benefit from a new coach and system. I personally would love to see it and wish him well either way. He gives it his all – I just think the offense was rudderless before. And for being Crittenton2 – no way – Crittenton was a cry baby and I don’t see that in Iman.

IL Jacket

March 30th, 2011
8:33 am

Byrddawg, I really hope you are right. With Iman back and adding Royal, I think we could be pretty good next year. I don’t know much about our other signee. We could use some more bigs, we were undersized this year, still great athleticism.

The Bees Nees

March 30th, 2011
9:09 am

Shump, the NBA will always be there. You can only improve your stock by coming back and playing for the Jackets.


March 30th, 2011
9:30 am

I think Iman is making a good move. He needs to get a true evaluation from the NBA scouts. He needs to remember that their projection is probably be biased a few picks higher than actual.

I think he could really improve his game with another year. He made a great improvement last season and I’m sure he could get that much better with another. There’s a big difference playing 30-35 games in a season vs 80-85.


March 30th, 2011
9:59 am

Why does everybody think Royal is good??? He scored 4 POINTS in his H.S. championship game!!! Do you really think he can contribute alot next year and Iman take the cash if its there, if not come back for another year!!! Remember James Forrest came back and got injured never played in the NBA!!!!


March 30th, 2011
11:19 am

I’m a big Ga. fan and I think Shumpert is a much better pro prospect
than Leslie.

Expectations for next year

March 30th, 2011
3:07 pm

Even with Iman, Tech was #11. New coach probably is good for a spot or two. You just know WF is gonna grab last again. NC, Duke, Fl State and MD are prolly going to all be good again so hopefully Tech fans will give the new guy a pass the first time around. Hope Iman stays and get some different coaching. (Tech would have been #13 in a 12 team league last year w/out Iman)

ATLER (ramblin wreck)

March 30th, 2011
4:35 pm

Earlier this week some so called Tech fans were doggin Ole Shumpert. Now we decide to play nice. Real fans stick by all Tech players past or present. If he jumps for the NBA don’t turn on him or if he comes back showering him with praises. Support him whatever he does.


March 30th, 2011
4:52 pm

Every junior should get evaluated so he can make an intelligent decision, and if projected second round, know what to work on for his senior year.

John Wooden

March 30th, 2011
6:36 pm

I don’t have much faith in Royal helping. He was really soft in the State tourneyl. Didn’t score well, didn’t defend the paint well…his team got beat because of that. Shumpert had better come back, Gregory’s system fits him to a Tee.


March 31st, 2011
2:15 pm

HAHAHAHA tek has hundreds of regular student seniors unsure of whether they want to waste another year at tek also. This guy is smart and he needs to go pro ASAP

griffin jim

April 2nd, 2011
9:21 pm

Iman is a fine young man with NBA level defensive skills, but he needs another year at Tech to polish his offensive skills. If everyone sticks, I feel that it will be an exciting season next year, with GT finishing in the top eschelon of the ACC. I think that everyone will be suprised at the improvement of our big men. They will shoot & score.