Creighton star Doug McDermott deciding between Big East and NBA
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PHILADELPHIA -- One way or another, Doug McDermott likely will appear next season at Madison Square Garden, either in an NBA uniform or as a senior at Creighton, which formally joined the new Big East Conference on Wednesday. As the second-leading scorer in Division I with a 23.1 average, the 6-8 forward must decide whether to enter the NBA draft, but that's a discussion he has yet to have with his father, Greg, who also happens to be his coach.
"Doug just wanted to shelve it until everything was over," Greg McDermott said Thursday. "I've got to wear a couple of hats. I've got to do the research Doug deserves from his head coach to make an educated decision, and I've got to take my coaching hat off and be his father and advise him appropriately.
"At the end of the day, I'm going to listen. This is Doug's decision. It's always been a dream of his to go to the NBA, but at the same time, he's living the dream playing basketball for Creighton University."
McDermott led the Jays (27-7) to the Missouri Valley Conference title and a second-round NCAA date with Cincinnati (22-11) of the old Big East Friday at Wells Fargo Center. Talk about ships passing in the night; the Bearcats are moving to a new conference with the Big East football schools, while Creighton, Xavier and Butler are joining the basketball schools.
"It's huge for the school," Doug McDermott said. "You can't say no when that offer comes because not a lot of schools could say they could join the Big East Conference.''
Anticipating Creighton's trip to the Garden for the Big East tourney next year, the younger McDermott said, "If you were telling me this a couple of years ago, I would have called you crazy. Watching the Big East Tournament at the Garden ever since I was little, everyone wants to play on that stage. It's definitely a cool deal."
Creighton plays in a 17,000-seat arena in Omaha, Neb., that sells out, but if the Jays' recognition suffered in the MVC, Greg McDermott said, "With our move to the Big East, any problem we've had with being a mid-major school is going to go away very soon."