On Wednesday afternoon, Miami Hurricanes G Lonnie Walker IV announced on social media that he is declaring for the NBA Draft. Walker IV is hiring an agent, so his collegiate career is now over.
This should come as no surprise to Miami fans who watched Walker IV this year and have heard of his elite talent for quite some time.
A 19 year old freshman, Walker played in all 32 games for the Canes in 2017-18, starting 18 of them. He averaged 11.5 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 1.9 assists, and nearly a steal a game on .415 % FG, .346 3FG% and .738 FT% shooting lines.
A 5-star recruit from Reading (PA), Walker IV was one of the highest rated recruits to ever commit to the University of Miami. He was a Jordan Brand and McDonald’s All-American in high school, and a consensus top 10 recruit in the 2017 recruiting class. If that doesn’t spell elite, I don’t know what does.
Walker IV’s freshman season at Miami had its ups and downs. He tore a meniscus in his left knee during pre-season, and while he was able to play in every game this year, he was clearly rounding into form through the first part of the year.
Once star G Bruce Brown Jr went down with injury, however, Walker IV took over as the alpha dog for the Canes. He scored double figures in 14 of Miami’s final 17 games, and was a highlight waiting to happen. From alley oops to tip dunks, to game winning buzzer beaters, Walker IV did it all for Miami down the stretch.While he wasn’t as wildly successful as his lofty recruiting ranking led many to believe he would be, Walker IV was still a force to be reckoned with, and flashed the elite athleticism and skills that have NBA teams drooling. Throughout the year, Walker IV has been projected as a top-15 NBA draft pick, and that is unlikely to change as he goes through the NBA Draft Combine and evaluation process.
The prevailing thought when Miami signed Walker IV was that he would be in Coral Gables for one year. The dream was a more successful season for the Canes, but with the announcement that he’s hiring an agent along with his journey into the NBA Draft, Walker IV has played his last game for The U.
As a parting gift, I give you Lonnie Walker IV’s freshman highlights.
Thanks for everything, Lonnie.
All the best, kid.