The Bullets are hoping to sign Bob Dandridge, who became a free agent yesterday.

If they can sign the sharp-shooting small forward before Friday's National Basketball Association draft it could affect the Bullets' first pick.

Washington has the fourth selection, the highest unspoken-for pick. Milwaukee has the first and third selections and will reportedly take center Kent Benson of Indiana and forward Marques Johnson of UCLA.

Kansas City has the second pick and the Kings have said they will take Otis Birdsong, a University of Houseton guard.

A number of teams are interested in obtaining the Bullets' top pick, but Washington is leaning toward using it to select forward Greg Ballard of Oregon or center Tom LaGarde of North Carolina. The Bullets have not ruled out taking forwards Kenny Carr of North Carolina State or Walter Davis of North Carolina.

It is no secret that they want a small forward and, although he is 6-foot-7, 220 pounds, the Bullets insist Ballard can play that spot.

By acquiring the third pick in a trade on Tuesday and presumably using it to select Johnson, the Bucks conceded that they have no chance at signing Dandridge.

Some 50 other NBA players also become free agents yesterday.

But Bullet free agents are center Wes Unseld, forward Mike Riordan, guard Jimmy Jones, guard Bob Weiss and forward Leonard Gray.

Unseld, who started every game for the Bullets last season, is expected to sign with them soon. Riordan's situation is uncertain. He was used sparingly last season and if he does signs, will be hard-pressed to make the team next season.

Jones was injured most of last season and is not expected to be offered a new contract. He reportedly will try out with the Denver Nuggets. Weiss has retired and Gray, a disappointment to the Bullets after coming to them early in the season in exchange for Nick Weatherspoon, is weighing his options.

Elsewhere, the NBA announced that Larry Moffelt of Nevada-Las Vegas, Freeman Williams of Portland State and Earl Holmes of Los Angeles Mission Junion College withdrew their names from the draft. That left eight undergraduates still eligible to be drafted, including Maryland's Brad Davis, Carr, Ray Epps of Norfolk State, Brad Holland of UCLA, Benard King of Tennessee, James Redwine of Eastern Washington State, Frank Sanders of Southern University and Ray Tatum of Malone College.