Small forward Sam Dekker of the Wisconsin Badgers was taken with the #18 overall pick in the NBA Draft by the Houston Rockets. Dekker entered the draft a year early after a stellar junior campaign which saw his stock rise during the season, peaking during Wisconsin's run to the NCAA championship game. At 6'9", 230 pounds, he already has an NBA body.
He was the second-leading scorer for the Badgers with 13.9 points a game playing alongside consensus player of the year Frank Kaminsky. He shot 52.5 percent for the year and added 5.5 rebounds per contest. His 125.8 offensive rating ranked 25th in the nation.
He was selected to the All-Big Ten second team for his play in the regular season, and helped the Badgers capture the Big Ten regular season and tournament titles.
However, Dekker's scoring average jumped to 19.2 on 57.1 percent shooting during the six games of the NCAA tournament, which included a career-high 27 in an Elite Eight game against Arizona. He was named the NCAA tournament West Regional Most Outstanding Player.
Dekker made an immediate impact when he arrived in Madison. As a freshman, he averaged 9.6 points and made the Big Ten All-Freshman team. Starting four games during the year, he became just the fourth freshman ever to start a game under Bo Ryan.
By his sophomore year he was a full-time starter scoring 12.4 a game and earning second team All-Big Ten honors. After just three seasons, he's 15th on the Wisconsin all-time scoring list.
Dekker, from Sheboygan, Wis., was the 2012 Gatorade Wisconsin Boys Basketball Player of the Year and a Parade All-American. Coached by his father Scott, he led Sheboygan Lutheran to a state title. He also won a gold medal at the World Championships in 2012 as a member of the U18 USA team.