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Darius Garland Drafted 5th Overall by Cleveland Cavaliers

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Garland is Vanderbilt’s highest NBA Draft pick since Clyde Lee in 1966.

NCAA Basketball: Vanderbilt at Southern California Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

So, it’s official: The 2018-19 Vanderbilt basketball team had a top five draft pick. For four games, anyway.

Garland came to Vanderbilt from nearby Brentwood Academy as easily the most hyped Commodore recruit in recent memory. He joined the team and immediately became its best player. Through four games he scored 79 points and shot 18-of-31 on two-pointers and 11-of-23 from three. He scored 33 points on Liberty on November 19.

And then, two minutes into a game against an unheralded Kent State team the day after Thanksgiving, Darius Garland’s season ended. Somehow, Darius Garland’s season ended before the Vanderbilt football team.

Still, that did nothing to affect his draft stock. As teams picking fifth overall often are, the Cavaliers were terrible in 2018-19, finishing tied with Phoenix for the worst record in the NBA. The strange part here is that Cleveland used its first pick last year on Alabama’s Collin Sexton, who apparently has already played his way into not being the point guard.

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