Scottie Bordelon is a reporter for the Hawgs Sports Network. He has a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Arkansas and previously covered high school sports for the Times Record in Fort Smith and the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He was the 2022 Arkansas Sportswriter of the Year.
Walsh keeps name in NBA draft
Arkansas guard/forward Jordan Walsh (13) gestures, Tuesday, February 21, 2023 during the second half of a basketball game at Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville. Visit nwaonline.com/photos for the photo gallery.
Arkansas wing Jordan Walsh is going all-in on his professional basketball career.
Walsh, one of the Razorbacks’ three 5-star signees in the 2022 class, is keeping his name in this year’s NBA Draft. It was first reported Wednesday night by ESPN analyst Jonathan Givony on Twitter.
Arkansas now has four players — Walsh, Nick Smith, Anthony Black, Ricky Council — from last season’s roster officially in the draft. The Razorbacks have not had multiple players selected in the same draft since 1992.
Arkansas guard Davonte Davis announced earlier Wednesday that he would return to school for his senior season.
"I am grateful for the opportunity the University of Arkansas has provided me. The experiences and memories that I've made as a Razorback will forever hold a special place in my heart," Walsh said in a video posted to his Twitter account. "The guidance from Coach [Eric] Musselman and the entire staff, the camaraderie of my teammates and the passion and energy of the Razorback fans have played a significant role in my development both as an athlete and as a person.
"I'm excited for this new chapter in my life and the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. I will carry the Razorback spirit with me wherever I go and strive to make all of you proud."
Walsh, who impressed at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago this month, was listed at No. 48 on The Athletic’s post-draft lottery big board, and he is considered by ESPN to be the 39th-best available player in the draft.
More from WholeHogSports: Devo Davis returning for senior season at Arkansas
"Once I got out of Arkansas, I'm now in a position where I don't have handcuffs on me," Walsh told ESPN. "I'm able to shoot and make plays for people. I have that flexibility to show that I can do all those things. I was stuck in a role, but now they'll see the real Jordan.
"That was a small glimpse of me at the combine."
He was one of four players to play during all 36 games in 2022-23, and he earned a start in 22. He averaged 7.1 points on 43.3% from the field and 27.8% from three-point range, 3.9 rebounds and 1.1 steals per game.
Walsh scored in double figures 12 times last season and added a season-high 18 points and 4 steals against Bradley on Dec. 17, 2022, in North Little Rock. He also had 13 points at LSU, at Kentucky and against Ole Miss.
The freshman was most impactful in the Razorbacks’ two NCAA Tournament wins against No. 9 seed Illinois and No. 1 Kansas. Behind his hustle, defense and some timely shot-making, Arkansas outscored the Illini and Jayhawks by 34 points during his 61 minutes in the lineup.
With Walsh's and Davis' decisions, the Razorbacks have one open scholarship. The NCAA limit is 13.
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