Yesterday Penn State announced that they were hiring Micah Shrewsberry as their new head coach. Today Penn State lost a majority of the key players from their team this past season.
Penn State forward Seth Lundy is in the portal. He's the sixth Nittany Lions player to enter today.— 247Sports Transfer Portal (@247SportsPortal) March 16, 2021
Lundy averaged 10.1 ppg this season. https://t.co/Uu9zwhsJuG
So in one day Penn State most likely lost the following players:
- Myreon Jones
- John Harrar
- Jamari Wheeler
- Izaiah Brockington
- Trent Buttrick
- Seth Lundy
Several of those players (Harrar, Wheeler, Buttrick) were seniors so their departure isn’t a huge surprise. All three could have returned, however, as players don’t lose a year of eligibility this season. The loss of Harrar stings as he was a glue guy inside for Penn State, averaging 8.8 points and 8.8 rebounds per game. Wheeler led the team in minutes per game while averaging 6.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.8 steals per game. Buttrick was a rotational player, averaging 3.0 points and 3.0 rebounds per game in 13.3 minutes per outing
The other losses sting even more as Jones, Brockington and Lundy were the top three scorers for Penn State. That means that in one day the top four scorers for Penn State have entered the transfer portal, leaving Sam Sessoms as the current highest returning scorer.
While the players have entered the portal it’s not guaranteed that all of them will leave the program.
“We got a new head coach and he said he was going to bring in a whole new coaching staff. A lot of guys have already entered the portal from Penn State, so I just wanted to keep my options open and see what was best for me,” Seth Lundy said about entering the portal. “I’m not officially transferring but I just want to see all my options. There’s definitely a possibility that I stay with the team...I did my research and see that he has a good resume. He’s been in the basketball world for a long time, so I just want to pick his brain and talk to him about some stuff. He worked at the next level and I’m trying to get there so I’d like to talk to him about that kind of stuff.”
The transfer exodus isn’t a huge surprise considering the school is dealing with both the addition of a new head coach and the sudden exit of the former head coach right before the season tipped off. Several Penn State players implied they weren’t exactly thrilled with how the school handled the departure of Patrick Chambers so seeing players leave following the season isn’t completely out of left field.
Regardless of the reason it now leaves Penn State with what will likely look like an entirely new team next season, making the job for Shrewsberry even harder in 2021-22. Even more so when you realize more players could depart and that the 2021 class currently has no commits. The one positive is that with players retaining eligibility and the NCAA likely easing transfer rules, Penn State will likely have plenty of options when bringing in outside players this offseason.
When everything was said and done it was definitely not a good start to the Shrewsberry era in State College.