While college basketball season does not begin in earnest for a little more than six months, the Seton Hall 2019/20 campaign’s fate very much hinges on the next 24 hours. That is because SHU’s star combo guard, Myles Powell, among other college hoop players testing the NBA waters, has until 11:59 p.m. ET Wednesday to decide whether to pull his name from draft contention, in order to be eligible for what would be his senior season.
Photo: Asbury Park Press
To call this a pivotal decision for the Trenton, NJ native would be an understatement. However, it is equally monumental for Kevin Willard’s program as well. To say that the Pirates upcoming season hangs in the balance on may 29 might be a bit of a stretch, but it kinda/sort of does (if you ask me).
Let’s face it, Powell is the face of The Hall, and his remarkable junior year’s play was the driving force behind the team’s surprising season. I think it’s safe to say that no one, not even dyed in the wool SHU fans, could have envisioned a 20-14 record, and a fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA tournament prior to the start of last year. Well, Myles’ fingerprints were all over it.
Photo: Basketball Society
His 23.1 points per game were a team-high, and his flair for the dramatic was truly his calling card. Game in and game out, he was the guy taking, and most often, making Seton Hall’s most important shots. Over the 34 game schedule, the 6’2″, 195 pounder was the team’s high scorer in 26 of them. Eight times he tallied 30 points or more, including dropping a career-high 40 against Grand Canyon University.
Since declaring for the draft after the season, Powell has made the rounds. He has worked out for the following NBA teams, Oklahoma City, Atlanta, Brooklyn, Charlotte and Sacramento. It was surprising to some insiders that he was not invited to the league combine, after he played well in the G League Elite Camp leading up to it.
Getting back to next year, following a quick Google search of “early 2019/20 college basketball top 25 rankings”, Seton Hall appears among the top 15 teams in the land in every list I clicked on, including these big ones:
ESPN – #11
CBS Sports – #11
NBC Sports – #12
247Sports – #12
Photo: Asbury Park Press
Of course these lofty rankings were made assuming Powell WILL BE back in South Orange. If not, Willard and the Hall will go to war with the following players, Myles Cale, Sandro Mamukelashvili, Quincy McKnight, Anthony Nelson, Taurean Thompson, Darnell Brodie, Romaro Gill, 7’1″ Florida State transfer Ikey Obiagu, and incoming freshman, Tyrese Samuel, and Dashawn Davis. A nice roster, but hardly a top 50 team, let alone top 15.
We should know soon enough as Powell has his Pro Day workout in Los Angeles today, and then he will decide after that. So, hold your breath Seton Hall Pirates fans, your wait is almost over…
Feature photo: shupirates.com