BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WISH) - Victor Oladipo and Tom Crean announced Tuesday afternoon Oladipo will enter the 2013 NBA draft.
The junior called realizing his lifelong dream of playing professionally "surreal."
"When I was in middle school, let alone, high school, I would always dream about it, but I never thought it would really come true," Oladipo told 24-Hour News 8's Amanda Maynard. "I believed that I could, but it was a long shot. There were a lot of days when I was just like what am I even doing, but I just kept going."
While Oladipo said he went back and forth on his decision throughout the season, the opportunity to go as a lottery pick was one he couldn't give up.
Tom Crean said it is an incredible thing to watch Oladipo's dreams come alive and supports him in his decision.
"No question, he will be able to take the next step and is ready," Crean stated. "I look forward to watching wherever he goes, and whatever team they have, they'll look back and they wont have any idea how great of a future player they're picking; more importantly how great of a citizen they're bringing into their city their community, their state."
Also, a major factor in his decision is that Oladipo will graduate in three years; he'll walk on May 4, 2013, his 21st birthday.
During the press conference, Oladipo thanked the IU fans and coaching staff and said he'll "be a Hoosier for life."
"There's not a word to describe how I feel about this program, how much love I have for it. It's been crazy few years," said Oladipo.
Many draft experts peg him as a top 10 pick. Coach Crean said from talking with NBA executives, he expects him to go no lower than a lottery pick, which is the top 14. From estimates gathered from last year's lottery picks, he could be looking at $2 million to $3 million a year.
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