For a second consecutive year, NC State guard Terquavion Smith is entering the NBA draft, reports Jonathan Givony of ESPN. However, after withdrawing his name from the 2022 draft last May, Smith says he’s “going all the way in” this time around and will forgo his remaining NCAA eligibility.
Smith’s decision to pull out of last year’s draft pool was a surprising one — he ranked 22nd on ESPN’s big board at the time and was considered a good candidate to be drafted in the first round. However, he said that he wanted “one more season to get everything right and just be a college student.”
One year later, Smith’s stock has dipped slightly (he’s now the No. 30 player on ESPN’s board) following a sophomore season in which his shooting percentages slipped to 38.0% from the field and 33.6% on three-pointers. However, he has no regrets about putting off the NBA for a year and believes he exhibited a more complete game in 2022/23.
“I showed a lot of different things this year,” Smith said. “Teams wanted to see me be more of a point guard, making the right play, making the right decisions. They wanted to see me improve my finishing, and I increased that. I showed I can be a leader.
“… I improved my grades. I’m a year closer to getting my degree now. You only get one chance to be a college student and get that college vibe. There was no rush for me. I’m ready to contribute to an NBA team now.”
Smith was NC State’s leading scorer in 2022/23 with 17.9 points per game. Following a disappointing ’21/22 season that saw the team finish with an 11-21 record, he led the Wolfpack to a 23-11 mark and a spot in the NCAA tournament this year.