Add another to the growing list of incoming players for head coach Michael Schwartz and his coaching staff heading into next season, as Iowa State point guard transfer Jaden Walker has announced his verbal commitment to East Carolina.
Walker officially visited campus Monday through Wednesday before announcing his pledge. The 6-foot-5, 200-pound guard brings Big XII experience and immediate size and length to ECU’s backcourt. Known as a strong defender and solid ball-handler Walker was a part-time starter as a true freshman, opening nine games and playing in 22 contests overall, when he averaged 3.2 points, 3.0 rebounds, 1.0 steals and 1.4 assists per game.
The Lawrenceville, Ga., native fell into a reserve role this season after a coaching change and with the emergence of freshman sensation point guard Tyrese Hunterwho has also since entered the portal after being named the Big 12 Freshman of the Year.
Walker provided a key moment during the season for this year’s Cyclones NCAA Tournament team, coming up with the game-clinching steal at Kansas State in the final seconds to go along with five points, two boards and three assists. He shot 50 percent form the field this season on limited attempts (24).
Walker concluded his Iowa State career with 2.8 points and 2.1 rebounds on average per game across 37 contests.
Upon his arrival to ECU, Walker will have three years of eligibility remaining (the 2020-21 season did not count against him). He’s the second transfer portal commitment of the Schwartz era, joining Tennessee shooting guard Quentin Diboundje, who also has three years left. Walker will likely compete with incoming freshman Saxby Sunderland and returning guard Javon Small for the starting point guard spot as things stand now. ECU also has offer out to Los Angeles native and 5-8 point guard prospect Kalib LaCount for the 2022 class.
Walker joins Diboundje, Sunderland, JUCO transfer Ben Bayela and prep forward Elijah Jones as one of five commitments for the 2022 class. The Pirates hosted target Ezra Ausar we visited this week as well.
Coming out of Core 4 Prep and Discovery High School in Georgia, Walker was a three-star recruit and rated 88 overall by 247Sports. Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Georgia Tech and New Mexico were among his other offers coming out of high school.
New ECU assistant coach Jake Mortonwho came over from Jacksonville State, led Walker’s recruitment for the Pirates.