After sitting out the 2012-13 season as a result of his transfer in from Virginia, Auburn guard K.T. Harrell hit the ground running offensively. With his 8.0 points per game as a freshman being the most productive of Harrell’s two seasons in Charlottesville, the 6-foot-4 guard scored 18.3 points per game in 2013-14. Harrell shot 43.4% from the field and 36.3% from beyond the arc last season, proving to be a solid scoring option alongside leading scorer Chris Denson.
Now that Denson’s out of eligibility there’s a void to be filled in the first season of the Bruce Pearl era. And while the addition of Niagara transfer Antoine Mason will certainly help from an offensive standpoint, as he averaged 25.6 points per game last season, it’s been Harrell who has stepped forward this summer.
Pearl discussed the development of Harrell during an appearance Thursday morning, praising both Harrell’s skill level and work ethic according to the Montgomery Advertiser.
Pearl called Montgomery native K.T. Harrell, who averaged 18.3 points for the Tigers last season, the team’s “best player and he’s our hardest worker,” during an appearance at the Public Safety Insurance Fund’s banquet at the RSA Activity Center Thursday morning.
“When your most valuable officer or person is also your hardest worker or your most dedicated, you’ve got a good team,” Pearl said to the audience of predominantly law enforcement officials. “K.T. leads by example both on and off the floor.”
Auburn certainly had its issues last season, as evidenced by their 14-16 overall record (6-12 SEC) which led to the dismissal of Tony Barbee. But there’s optimism, thanks to the arrival of Pearl and the addition of some talented newcomers. But Auburn’s fate will in large part be determined by the production of its leading returnee, with Harrell’s scoring and leadership abilities being key factors in 2014-15.
And by the sounds of it, Harrell has embraced his role under the new head coach.