Virginia Tech Shows Interest in William & Mary Guard Justin Pierce
Updated: Apr 23, 2019
After announcing his decision to enter the grad transfer market, William & Mary guard Justin Pierce immediately became a top target for many major conference programs. According to Stadium’s Jeff Goodman and ESPN’s Jeff Borzello, Virginia Tech is one of many schools to reach out to the potential grad transfer.
Pierce also added that he hasn’t ruled out a return to William & Mary dependent upon on who the Tribe hires as their next head coach.
Improvement with the Tribe
As a junior this season, the 6’7″ guard from Illinois averaged 14.9 points, 8.9 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game.
Pierce was the second leading scorer for the Tribe this season behind Nathan Knight, a Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award Finalist, who averaged 21 points per game. The combination of Knight and Pierce guided the Tribe to a 14-17 record overall and a 10-8 record in the CAA, good enough for a fourth place finish in the conference.
Pierce’s statistics improved with each passing year in Williamsburg. As a freshman, he averaged 3.7 points per game and 10.7 minutes per game. He averaged 14.7 points per game, 8.6 rebounds per game and 2.4 assists per game his sophomore year. Though Pierce’s shooting numbers took a hit this past season, his near doubling of his assist average (2.4 to 4.1) is a great sign of his overall growth into more than just a shooter and rebounder.
After announcing he was exploring the option to grad transfer, a few pieces of Pierce’s film circulated on Twitter.
At first glance, he’s a lethal backdoor cutter that also has a quick release when catching and shooting coming off screens. That ability, along with his his catch and shoot ability, can be seen in this link.
In relation to other schools that have reached out to Pierce, ESPN’s Jeff Borzello reports that Pierce has offers from 25 additional programs along with the Hokies.
Almost all of the teams that contacted Justin Pierce are from the “power six” basketball conferences, which shows the skill level that Pierce brings to the table. ACC teams that have reached out to Pierce are Tech, NC State, Georgia Tech, Boston College and Notre Dame.
If I had to compare Justin Pierce to a recent college basketball player, I’d compare him with Grayson Allen.
Even though Pierce is two inches taller than Allen, he shoots very well coming off screens and off the dribble. He also has a great ability to slash to the rim, similar to Allen.
Pierce’s film shows he is a great passer and creator who also brings great versatility and athleticism to the table as well, making him a very good fit for Buzz Williams’ style of play given his well-rounded game.
Photo Credit: Harley Taylor