The James Wiseman saga took another wild turn on Thursday.
Per Shams Charania of The Athletic, the potential future No. 1 pick has decided to leave Memphis and will sign with an agent to prepare for the 2020 NBA Draft.
Wiseman, an 18-year-old freshman regarded as the top basketball prospect, confirmed he was leaving Memphis in an Instagram post.
Wiseman played in just three collegiate games before he was suspended by the NCAA in November after it determined Wiseman received an illegal payment of $11,500 from Memphis head coach Penny Hardaway — who was Wiseman's high school coach at the time — that covered moving expenses in 2017.
Memphis appealed the decision and said Wiseman had no knowledge of the payment. The freshman was able to play the day he was suspended due to a court-ordered injunction, and subsequently filed a lawsuit against the NCAA. He dropped the lawsuit a week later and would not be eligible to play until Jan. 12 before ultimately making decision to leave the university.
“Ever since I was a little kid, it’s been a dream of mine to ply in the NBA,” he wrote on Instagram. “Throughout this process, I’ve asked God to ordain my steps and lead me in the right direction. God is my lord and salvation, and throughout this process he has comforted me. This was not how I expected my freshman season to be, but I’m thankful for everyone who has supported my family and me throughout this process.”