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June 27, 2013Kansas men's basketball standouts from the 2012-13 season will look to join elite company on Thursday, June 27, as they wait to hear their names called in the 2013 NBA Draft. The draft will be televised live on ESPN and ESPN3 at 6 p.m. CT, from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Guard Ben McLemore won't have to wait long as he is a projected top-five pick, while center Jeff Withey is predicted to go in the late first round in many of the latest mock drafts. Guards Travis Releford and Elijah Johnson have also been mentioned in some mock drafts. McLemore is one of 10 players invited to attend the 2013 NBA Draft.
Last season, Thomas Robinson and Tyshawn Taylor were the 14th and 15th, respectively, players drafted during the Bill Self era. Robinson's fifth overall pick was the highest Jayhawk taken since Drew Gooden was selected fourth overall in 2002. Taylor was the 41st selection in the 2012 NBA Draft.
If McLemore and Withey are both selected in the first round, it will be the seventh time Kansas has had multiple NBA first round picks in the same year: 1997 (Scott Pollard and Jacque Vaughn), 1998 (Raef LaFrentz and Paul Pierce), 2003 (Nick Collison and Kirk Hinrich), 2008 (Brandon Rush and Darrell Arthur), 2010 (Xavier Henry and Cole Aldrich) and 2011 (Markieff Morris and Marcus Morris).
Since the inception of the Big 12 in 1996-97, KU has had 23 players drafted to the NBA, which is the most of any league member. KU has sent 27 players to the NBA during the past 20 years, which is tied with North Carolina for third-most among all NCAA Division I schools and only trails Kentucky (30) and Duke (29).