Last weekend, Kentucky freshman forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist launched the first salvo in the annual "in or out of the NBA draft" speculation fest.
Gilchrist told reporters after Saturday's win versus Vanderbilt that "I'm graduating here. I'm not going anywhere. I'm staying at Kentucky."
After a few skeptical reporters laughed, he retorted, "I'm dead serious. I don't know why y'all laughing."
There's a long history of top players claiming toward the end of the season that they are returning to college, only to do a 180 a few weeks later once they get confirmation that they will be a lottery pick. More often than not, when a top prospect says he's staying in school, you can go ahead and pull out the Sharpie and write him into the draft.
However, that's not always the case. Last year Harrison Barnes, Perry Jones III and Jared Sullinger all consistently said they'd stay in school and did so despite being projected as top-10 picks on our Big Board. Other elite freshmen, including Blake Griffin, have done the same in years past.
But they are the exceptions to the rule.
To see more of Chad Ford's analysis on why players say they will stay in school, sign up for Insider today.