- The Washington Times - Monday, April 15, 2019

A week after winning the National Championship, Virginia stars De’Andre Hunter and Ty Jerome declared for the NBA draft on Monday.

Hunter, 21, is seen by analysts as a top-10 pick. He is coming off the best performance of his career — scoring 27 points and grabbing nine rebounds in Virginia’s 85-77 win over Texas Tech to lead them to the school’s first-ever NCAA title.

NBA teams value Hunter, 6-foot-7, for his versatility and 3-point ability. He shot 43.8 percent from deep in 2018-19.

Hunter spent two years at Virginia. He mulled leaving after his freshman year because of interest from the NBA, but returned to campus for another season.

View this post on Instagram

Being at the University of Virginia has been an amazing experience. From being a redshirt to winning a national championship, the journey has been unbelievable. I want to say thank you to Coach Bennett and the coaching staff for challenging me everyday to become not only a better basketball player but a better man off the court. I am forever grateful for them. Winning a national championship has always been a dream of mine and accomplishing that with this team is something I will never forget. Thank you to all the fans for your tremendous support. You guys will always be in my heart. My family has always been my backbone. I could never thank them enough for all of the work they have done for me. My mom, brother, and two sisters have always been there for me and without them I would not be the man I am today. I want to Thank God for blessing me with this unique opportunity. Playing NBA was always a lifelong dream, with that being said I would like to announce that I will be entering the NBA draft and signing an agent. UVA will always be a special place to me. Wahoowa! 🧡💙

A post shared by De’Andre Hunter (@drehunter_) on Apr 15, 2019 at 12:46pm PDT

Jerome was a key contributor to the Cavaliers’ championship run, averaging 16.5 points per game in the NCAA Tournament. ESPN projects Jerome, a 6-foot-5 guard, as a late first-round pick. 

In an Instagram post, the 21-year-old thanked Virginia’s fan base and said he will be signing with an agent.

View this post on Instagram

The last three years at Virginia have been everything I could have dreamed of in a college experience. When Coach Bennett recruited me he said he would never stop challenging me to improve, on and off the court - and he meant it. He did that every single day, and he made me a better basketball player and better man. I am eternally grateful to him and the entire coaching staff, and fans. I also want to give a special thank you to our strength coach, coach Curtis and our athletic trainer, Ethan Saliba; the best in the business! I came to Virginia to win a national championship and to be able to do that with my brothers is a dream come true. And to the best fans in college basketball - we would not have done it without you. Last but certainly not least, I want to thank my mom, dad, brother and entire family. The time, effort and love they have given me is truly a gift, and I would not have had this opportunity without them. I have had a ball in my hand basically since the day I was born. My dream has always been to play in the NBA. Therefore, after speaking with my family and coaches and giving it a lot of thought, I know it’s the right time to announce that I will be entering the NBA draft and signing with an agent. I will forever be a wahoo🧡 UVA, from the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU!

A post shared by Ty Jerome (@tyjerome_) on Apr 15, 2019 at 7:58am PDT

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