The Pirates struggled to find consistency shooting three pointers last season, but their freshman marksman is keen on changing that.
Myles Powell was known by many scouts as the best shooter in the entire high school recruiting class last season. His ability to shoot from beyond the arc is something the Pirates were lacking a year ago.
“Last season everyone always said [Seton Hall] lacked three- point shooting,” Powell said. “I want to do whatever coach [Kevin] Willard wants me to do and hopefully [three-point shooting] will be a big part.”
Seton Hall, as a team, shot 34.7 percent from deep last season. That ranked 167th in the nation out of the 347 teams in Division I college basketball. Willard knew exactly what he was getting when Powell signed.
“I think adding Myles really helps,” Willard said. “He can make three or four threes in a row. When you add a guy that can stretch the floor it opens up the driving lanes.”
Those open lanes can allow for teammates Khadeen Carrington, Desi Rodriguez and others to drive and make things happen inside. That includes finding Powell open on the perimeter for a three-point shot.
“My whole team gets on me when I have an open three and don’t shoot it,” Powell said chuckling. “Desi, Angel [Delgado], Khadeen and Ish [Sanogo], they are always coming up to me, smacking me, telling me to shoot the ball. Me and Angel do this little thing where we pull each other’s hair and stuff like that, so they are always encouraging me to shoot the ball.”
ESPN’s scouting report on Powell stated, “He’s virtually automatic when his feet are set and already owns range out to the NBA arc.” Willard saw that ability early on in Powell’s recruitment.
“His stroke hasn’t changed since we first started recruiting him,” Willard said. “I’ve seen a lot of shots when I said, ‘Wow, that was a big-time shot.’ You get more surprised when he misses.”
Powell started practicing with the team back in June. Since then, the Pirates have come to believe his three-point shooting will become a big weapon for them offensively. For Powell, like many shooters, the key to his success is confidence.
“With shooters there is no doubt,” Powell said. “You are not supposed to think you might miss this one, might miss that one. Every one you shoot you are supposed to think it is going to go in.”
Sean Saint Jacques can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @SSaintj7.