BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Former LSU Tiger Ben Simmons was drafted by the Philadelphia 76ers as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft.
The 6-foot-10 forward from Australia averaged 19.2 points, 11.8 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game, finishing in the top five in the SEC in each category. He is the only player in SEC history to do so.
On the eve of the draft, the 76ers tweeted a pre-draft workout video with Simmons.
Simmons impressed the team, according to Sixers' general manager Bryan Colangelo.
"It was helpful at the end of the day," Colangelo told reporters following Simmons' workout at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, reported the Philadelphia Inquirer. "I think it was most important for us to kind of close the chapter on any doubt that Ben or [his agent] Rich [Paul] would want to have Ben here in Philadelphia."
Shortly after that workout, Simmons was told by the Sixers that the team planned on using the No. 1 overall pick on him. This is the first time the Sixers have had the top selection in the NBA Draft since choosing Allen Iverson out of Georgetown with the top selection in the 1996 NBA Draft.
Simmons played at LSU in the 2015-16 season. He was the National Freshman of the Year and was named the SEC Freshman of the Year. He is also the first LSU freshman to win the conference Freshman of the Year award since 2006 when Tyrus Thomas was honored.
Former Tiger and NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal was the last No. 1 pick from LSU. Shaq will be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame along with Iverson in September.