'Big Baby' Davis leaving LSU after three seasons

BATON ROUGE, La. -- LSU's "Big Baby" is moving on to the
next stage of his basketball life.

Glen "Big Baby" Davis announced Tuesday that he will skip his senior year
to enter the NBA draft.

"After my toughest year, I now feel I am physically and
mentally ready for the NBA," Davis said. "In my mind and in my
heart, I felt that it was time for me to move on."

Coach John Brady said last week the 6-foot-9, 290-pound junior
had been meeting with agents and was leaning toward turning pro.

Davis averaged 17.7 points and 10.4 rebounds this season,
missing several games late in the year because of a strained
quadriceps. He is the only LSU player other than Shaquille O'Neal
with career totals surpassing 1,500 points, 900 rebounds and 100
blocks. Davis was an AP second team All-America selection during
the 2005-06 season, when LSU went to the Final Four.

"Last year, the team had great success. I was part of only four
[LSU] teams to make it to the Final Four," Davis said. "I decided
to stay and hoped to build on that this year. Unfortunately that
didn't happen."

Davis has signed with Houston-based agent John Hamilton of
Performance Sports Management but will remain enrolled at LSU until
the end of the semester. The NBA's pre-draft camp is from May 28 to
June 5 in Orlando, and Davis expects to be there.

Brady said he advised Davis to turn pro unless he was fully
committed to returning to LSU for his senior year. The coach told
Davis not to base his decision purely on scouts' projections about
how high he'd be picked in the NBA draft.

"That was the most important thing to me," Brady said. "I
told him two weeks ago that he needs to go where his heart moves
him to go, not where someone tells him he'll go [in the draft]. He
had three outstanding years at LSU. I watched him grow. ... He'll
do well."

Davis said he's been told he could be selected anywhere from the
middle of the first round to early in the second. First-round picks
get guaranteed three-year contracts. Second-rounders do not, and
many get cut in training camp. In rare cases, however, being picked
in the second round can be a financial boon to players who perform
well since they can enter the league under shorter contracts and
become free agents sooner.

While Davis played both center and power forward in college,
he's expected to play only the latter in the pros.

"It's just about being ready and I'm ready," Davis said. "The
game is still called basketball. I'm well qualified to play the
game. Basically, I was ready for the next level. I feel I have
nothing to prove. ... I believe no other power forward can do what
I do. I can score and I can rebound."