There’s something else at work behind the DeAndre Daniels decision to delay any announcement that he’s signing with the Kansas Jayhawks, Texas Longhorns or the Oregon Ducks. That’s the only assumption given the circumstances behind the constant postponing and silence to explain it.
Everyone can relate to dragging out a decision. After all, the selection of a college is a major decision and the pressures are mounting for Daniels no matter what he selects. What makes the DeAndre Daniels decision different is the lack of authenticity. There’s no family member out front saying, “We just need more time.” Instead, there’s radio silence from both father and son, which seems to point to something unexplained lying underneath the surface. Could it be that Daniels isn’t selecting a college because he’s not even going to go?
It’s easy to forget that the future of the NBA is in doubt in light of the NFL’s current lockout and the large shadow it creates. But as ESPN’s Larry Coon wrote recently, a lockout appears more and more likely as the days go on. Perhaps a deal can be done, as Chris Sheridan believes, but it will go down to the eleventh hour.
The reason this affects DeAndre Daniels’ decision is because part of any new Collective Bargaining Agreement could be the loss of David Stern’s pet rule about the allowance of high school graduates to skip college. This summer holds the key for the NBA’s future and that very rule could be swayed in the months between Daniels signing with a school and playing for that school. To that end, there’s no harm in Daniels waiting to see what opens up for him.
Unless Daniels is more emotional or dramatic than most realize, the endless delays cannot be about an inability to choose between two or three schools. There’s been plenty of time for visits and conversation already. But the one piece of the puzzle that Daniels must wait for is the NBA’s labor situation to resolve itself. And in doing so, he might not pick any of these schools after all.