Michigan State men’s basketball senior center Marcus Bingham Jr. is reportedly moving on from college basketball.
MSU senior Marcus Bingham told me he is not coming back to the Spartans next year. Says he is starting the process for the NBA draft and is ready for what’s next in his basketball career. @marcusbingham0 pic.twitter.com/CvmXh4RWIc— Mike Lacett (@mikelacett) March 26, 2022
Bingham could have returned to the Spartans as a fifth-year senior for the 2022-2023 season, due to a blanket waiver for an extra year of eligibility given to all winter athletes during the 2020-2021 season, which was caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, given his postgame comments following Michigan State’s loss to Duke in the second round of the 2022 NCAA Tournament, this decision is not all too surprising. It appears Bingham is ready to pursue a professional basketball career and start the next chapter of his life.
During the 2021-2022 season, Bingham averaged career highs across the board: minutes per game (18.7), points per game (9.3), rebounds per game (6.3) field goal percentage (54.7 percent), three-point percentage (41.5 percent), free-throw percentage (74.7 percent), blocks per game (2.2) and steals per game (0.9).
Bingham finished his final game as a Spartan with 16 points and 10 rebounds against Duke, hitting five of his 12 shot attempts and making all four of his three-point attempts. Bingham was able to add three-point shooting to his repertoire this season, making 17 of his 41 attempts from deep range.
Bingham, listed at 7-feet tall and 230 pounds, leaves Michigan State as the program’s all-time leader in blocked shots with 168. He passed his former teammate, Xavier Tillman, who previously held the record with 153 blocks. Bingham tied Tillman’s record against the Purdue Boilermakers on Feb. 26 and then broke it on March 1 against the Michigan Wolverines.
In 117 career games played with 53 starts, on a per game basis, Bingham averaged 12.0 minutes, 4.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.4 blocks and 0.5 steals. He shot 48.6 percent from the field, 32.6 percent from three-point range and 70.7 percent from the free-throw line.
As of press time, Bingham is projected to be drafted in the second round or get signed as an undrafted free agent.
It is currently unclear whether or not Bingham has signed an agent. NBA Draft hopefuls who hired an NCAA-certified agent (or opted not to sign an agent at all) have until June 1 at 11:59 Eastern Time to withdraw their name from the draft and retain college eligibility. However, Bingham’s decision seems to be pretty final.
Earlier this weekend, reports broke that Michigan State forward Gabe Brown would forgo his final year of eligibly and pursue the NBA Draft. With Bingham now expected to pursue the professional ranks as well, all eyes for Michigan State fans turn to redshirt senior forward Joey Hauser, who has not publicly made a decision on his plans for the 2022-2023 season and beyond.
Update: Bingham officially announced his decision to enter the NBA Draft on Thursday, March 31.