Morgantown, West Virginia – Last week, Derek Culver was focused solely on his professional career. He was ready to leave West Virginia University and pursue a career in the NBA, the G League or a professional career overseas.
Now, Culver is 50/50 on whether he’ll return to play one more season for the Mountaineers or pursue other options.
Culver has spent the last two weeks in Los Angeles, California and although the details are sketchy, he has certainly been working out and training with hopes of becoming a professional basketball player and making money immediately.
However, reality could be setting in for Derek Culver. He he is not going to be drafted in the 2021 NBA Draft. He was promised certain things by certain people that clearly weren’t exactly true, and Culver is now torn.
Leaving West Virginia now looks bleak. He could impress NBA scouts and executives in workouts and earn a spot in the G League, but the average salary in the G League is $7,500 a month, or approximately $35,000 a year.
Playing overseas isn’t much better right now. With teams unable to allow fans in attendance for an entire year, owners have lost a tremendous amount of money and the average salary for overseas professional basketball players are $30,000-60,000 a year.
Although Culver is ready to move on and would like to make money playing professionally right now, staying at West Virginia for another year and getting his degree is almost certainly his best option for his future right now.
Having said that, Culver is riding high after last season, earning a spot on the Big 12 Conference first team, averaging 14.9 points and 9.9 rebounds per game, and he could potentially hurt his chances of playing professionally if he injures himself in college, or is unable to recreate or better his output from last season.
Culver has inquired about returning to West Virginia University for one more season and has continued to do his school work this semester. Right now, he is 50/50 on returning and is still entirely undecided on what to do. The deadline to declare for the NBA Draft is May 30th at midnight, so he still has time to figure this all out.
Although Bob Huggins has been actively recruiting interior players to replace him, he would certainly welcome back Derek Culver back for one more season.