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Roby still weighing decision after positive NBA Combine

Nebraska's Isaiah Roby helped boost his stock with a solid performance at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago last week.
Nebraska's Isaiah Roby helped boost his stock with a solid performance at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago last week. (Getty Images)

Before the 2019 NBA Draft Combine officially opened on Thursday in Chicago, Isaiah Roby was walking to the Quest Multisport court with his old college coach, Tim Miles.

On their way, they bumped into Miles’ successor at Nebraska, Fred Hoiberg.

“It was pretty funny; Miles cracked a joke and said something like, ‘I’m telling him he can’t come back (to NU). No way,” Roby said. “We all laughed about that. It was cool. I really appreciated both of them coming out to support me like that. It meant a lot.”

What the coaches and many other Husker fans watching on television saw was the senior forward performing exactly as expected. While it wasn’t a perfect week, Roby showcased his unique blend of athleticism and versatility during two five-on-five scrimmages and the individual testing portions of the combine.

He posted 10 points, five rebounds, two blocks, and an assist in 21 minutes during the opening scrimmage on Thursday. Roby then followed that up with 15 points, six boards, two assists, two steals, and a block in 30 minutes on Friday.

The downside of playing in the first scrimmage on Thursday was Roby had to wait until after the game to do his individual testing.

Despite some tired legs, he still tied for eighth in the standing vertical jump (32.5 inches) and tied for ninth in the lane agility (10.63 seconds) among all 66 players in attendance. His lane agility time placed third among forwards, as did his three-quarter sprint (3.25).

“It was definitely a good time and something I’d been looking forward to ever since I can remember, really,” Roby said. “Being able to go out there and show what I’m able to do, I think I did a pretty good job of that… I can always do better, but it was a pretty good week, I’d say.”

Feedback from NBA teams was still coming in on Monday, and Roby said he'd gotten a lot of valuable evaluations and information over the past week.

Right now, Roby is all over the board in the latest NBA mock draft projections. Some media outlets have him getting drafted in the first round (as high as 25th overall), while some don’t even have him listed.

Roby has already held individual team workouts with the San Antonio Spurs, Minnesota Timberwolves, Milwaukee Bucks, and Chicago Bulls, and he has new workouts set this week with the Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings.

He said his training facility was also holding a pro day on Friday that would have representatives of all 30 NBA teams in attendance, and he was still working on getting a few more team workouts in before the early entry entrant withdrawal deadline of May 29.

Which leads to the elephant in the room: has Roby decided on whether he’s going to stay in the NBA Draft?

“I really haven’t made a decision yet, but in the next couple weeks obviously that’s going to come,” Roby said. “It could be at the end of the week, or it could be on the 29thstill.”

One thing Roby does know is that May 29 is his deadline. There has been some confusion about whether a player invited to the combine could wait until through the draft before deciding to go pro or return to school, but Roby said that wasn’t the case.

Meanwhile, Roby has also noticed that Nebraska has continued to recruit as if he wouldn’t be returning to Lincoln next season, as the Huskers are currently at 14 scholarship players for 2019-20, one over the NCAA limit.

But as far as his communication with Hoiberg has gone, that stuff hasn’t come up at all.

“When me and Coach Hoiberg talk, it’s mostly about my situation and what he’s been up to and his family and all that,” Roby said. “We really haven’t had any discussions about recruiting.”

Just like Miles, Roby turned to some humor in what could have been an awkward topic.

“I don’t know,” Roby joked, “they might be kicking me out.”