According to multiple reports, JR Smith is heading back to college and intends to play golf.
The 16-year NBA veteran has enrolled at North Carolina A&T, a historically Black university, and is awaiting the NCAA's approval to join the men's team.
College signing day for @TheRealJRSmith. 🧢- PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) August 11, 2021
The two-time @NBA champ is enrolling @NCATAggies with his sights set on the golf team.
The NCAA rules state "an individual shall not be eligible for intercollegiate athletics in a sport if the individual ever competed on a professional team in that sport."
Smith, who has obviously not competed professionally in golf, never attended college and went straight from high school to the NBA in 2004, a year prior to the league's 'one-and-done' rule. It is, so far, unclear when the NCAA's approval on Smith's eligibility would be announced.
For years, Golf has been a favoured 'second sport' for NBA players with the likes of Michael Jordan, Stephen Curry and Ray Allen being regulars on the 'green'. And Hall of Famer Allen chimmed in social media to support Smith's next step.
On his Instagram post, former NBA players like Deron Williams and Quentin Richardson also showed their support for Smith.
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Over the course of his 16 years in the league, Smith has been on two NBA championship teams in 2016 and 2020 while also being named the Sixth Man of the Year in 2013. The 2020 season, in the bubble with the Los Angeles Lakers, was the last time the 6-foot 6 guard was on an NBA roster.
The Lakers were one of five teams he represented in 977 career regular-season games, during which he averaged 12.4 points while shooting 37.3 percent from beyond the arc. In the playoffs, his 294 3-pointers in 140 games ranks 9th all-time.
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