Having lost four seniors that led the program to three consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, Seton Hall entered the offseason knowing that it would have some major holes to fill in preparation for the 2018-19 campaign. Head coach Kevin Willard and his staff have even more work to do in the backcourt however, as the Pirates have bid farewell to two transfers this spring.
Wednesday afternoon it was reported by Jerry Carino of Gannett New Jersey that reserve point guard Jordan Walker has decided to transfer, joining fellow backup Eron Gordon as perimeter players who have moved on.
Walker, who at the start of the 2017-18 season was expected to serve as Khadeen Carrington’s primary backup, did not experience the smoothest of freshman years. Walker was sidelined during part of non-conference play due to torn ligaments in his hand, and after returning the 6-foot freshman briefly left the team due to frustrations over playing time.
Walker would appear in 17 games this past season, averaging 1.8 points in 7.6 minutes per game.
Walker’s decision to transfer isn’t a particularly surprising one, and it leaves Seton Hall with two scholarships to fill ahead of the 2018-19 season. The losses of Gordon and Walker hurt from a depth standpoint however, with more pressure falling upon the shoulders of Sacred Heart transfer Quincy McKnight (18.9 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 3.0 apg in 2016-17) and incoming freshman Anthony Nelson on the perimeter.
Seton Hall will need those two to hit the ground running, especially when considering who the Pirates lost due to graduation. Carrington, Angel Delgado (the Big East’s all-time leader in rebounds), Desi Rodriguez and Ishmael Sanogo were all incredibly important “building blocks” for a program in need of a boost when they arrived on campus in the summer of 2014. That quartet leaves campus having helped lead the Pirates to three consecutive NCAA tournament bids, something that had not been accomplished since the early 1990’s (four straight trips from 1991 to 1994).
As a result, the responsibility to keep things rolling in the right direction will largely fall upon the shoulders of Myles Powell (15.5 ppg, 2.8 apg, 2.6 rpg) next season. But for as talented as Powell has proven to be, he’ll need some help. And if Seton Hall is to make it four straight trips to the NCAA tournament, the Pirates will need McKnight and Nelson to be the impact additions many expect them to be.