IU-Rutgers 1

Indiana guard Romeo Langford drives around Rutger's Peter Kiss during the Hoosiers' 89-73 victory over Rutgers at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall on Sunday. 

As most expected, Romeo Langford will enter the 2019 NBA Draft.

"I plan on officially declaring for the draft next week," the 2018 New Albany High School graduate, who recently finished his freshman season at Indiana University, told ESPN in a story published Thursday.

Thursday afternoon Langford retweeted the ESPN story along with the words "Gods plan," followed by three praying emojis.

The 6-foot-6 shooting guard is projected to be a lottery pick (a.k.a among the first 14 selections) by many in the June 20 draft that will be held at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

Langford is coming off an accomplished freshman season for the Hoosiers, who finished 19-16 but failed to make the NCAA Tournament. Despite not playing in IU's three NIT games due to a back injury, he topped the team in scoring at 16.5 points per game while also averaging 5.4 rebounds and 2.3 assists on his way to earning second-team All-Big Ten honors and being named to the league's all-freshman team.

Langford scored in double figures in 28 of the 32 games in which he played and tallied 20 or more points 11 times. His season-high was 28 points, which he scored twice — on Jan. 3 against Illinois and Jan. 11 against Maryland.

He shot 44.8 percent from the field, including 27.2 percent from 3-point range, and 72.2 percent from the free throw line.

Langford also revealed in the ESPN story that he will have surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb.

"I hurt my thumb right before the Duke game in practice," he said.

Langford shot 3-for-15 from the field and scored 13 points in the Hoosiers' 90-69 loss to the Blue Devils on Nov. 27.

He played with his thumb wrapped up for the remainder of the season.

"I think it's fair to say that we never got a chance to see me at my best at the college level, especially since I've been playing with basically a cast on my thumb the whole season," Langford told ESPN. "Obviously that throws off your shot. Even though I didn't shoot as well as I'm capable of, I feel like I shot the ball pretty well in the second half of the season."

Langford shot better than 50 percent from the field in just two of his final 16 games. One of those was the 84-63 Feb. 16 loss at Minnesota in which he was 4 for 6 from the field and tallied 10 points. The other was was when he went 7-for-12 and scored 22 points in a 77-72 loss to Iowa on Feb. 7.

While many believe Langford will be a lottery pick — he ranks No. 11 in the ESPN Top 100 — the projections of exactly where he will be drafted varied Thursday. The Sporting News had him going seventh overall to the Atlanta Hawks, while nbadraftroom.com had him going No. 23 to the Utah Jazz. NBCsports.com, meanwhile, had Langford going No. 11 to the Los Angeles Lakers. That would be a dream come true for Langford, whose favorite player is LeBron James.

Langford, who'll turn 20 years old in October, becomes IU's first one-and-done player since Noah Vonleh in 2014.

Langford was the fifth-ranked prep player in the country by ESPN coming out of New Albany. He scored 3,002 points in his career, led the Bulldogs to the Class 4A state title in 2016 and was named the state's Mr. Basketball after his senior season.

When he announced that he was going to attend Indiana last May, Langford was asked about being a one-and-done player.

"It'd be cool if it was [to happen], but however many years it takes me to get to the NBA, that's my main goal," he said.

It's a goal that is now only a few months away for Langford.

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