Former Eagle megastar is officially headed for the NBA after being chosen in the second round as the 51st pick overall
After performing his magic act at Reese Court in the past three seasons, the transition from Eagle to a member of the Orlando Magic has begun for former Eastern Washington University men’s basketball player Tyler Harvey.
The former Eagle sharpshooter was selected by Orlando in the second round as the 51st pick overall of the National Basketball Association Draft on Thursday (June 25) in Brooklyn, N.Y. He elected to skip his senior season at Eastern for the chance to play in the NBA, and it appears his gamble has paid off, as he becomes just the third Eagle in school history to be drafted.
Since declaring for the draft on April 1, Harvey had workouts with many NBA teams, including 12 scheduled visits in a grueling stretch from May 20 to June 19 (5/20 Spurs; 5/26 Suns; 5/27 Jazz; 6/1 Lakers; 6/3 Pacers; 6/5 Cavaliers; 6/8 Bulls; 6/10 Nets; 6/12 Grizzlies; 6/15 Wizards; 6/17 Rockets; 6/19 Mavericks). He also participated in the National Basketball Association Draft Combine in Chicago from May 12-17.
“I am very happy for Tyler,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford. “He has worked so hard, and I know as he learns about the next level he will work only harder. I join every EWU fan and friend in congratulating him and thanking him for getting his degree and helping us build a strong program.”
Orlando finished last in the Southeast Division of the Eastern Conference a year ago, closing the year 25-57. The Magic drafted another shooting guard in the first round – Mario Hezonja from FC Barcelona Basquet in Spain.
The Magic were just 25th out of 30 NBA teams in scoring in the 2014-15 season, averaging 95.7 points per game. They were 16th in 3-point shooting (34.7 percent), with forward Channing Frye leading the team and ranking 18th in the league (39.3 percent, 120-of-304). Evan Fournier was the team’s top 3-point shooter from the guard position (31st in the league at 37.8 percent, 85-of-225).
Harvey was a walk-on to the Eastern program in the fall of 2011 in Hayford's first year as head coach. After a redshirt season and playing sparingly in EWU's first 13 games, he was a high-scoring mainstay for the Eagles in the final 71 games of his 84-game career (67 as a starter). He led NCAA Division I in scoring (23.1) and 3-pointers made per game (4.00) in the 2014-15 season.
Rodney Stuckey, who recently concluded his eighth season in the NBA, was drafted 15th overall by the Detroit Pistons in the 2007 NBA Draft, where he spent his first seven seasons as a pro before moving to the Indiana Pacers this season. Besides Stuckey, Ron Cox is the only previous NBA draftee from Eastern. He was a sixth-round draft choice by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1977, but did not play in a regular season NBA game because of reconstructive surgery on his left ankle.
Harvey is the first Big Sky Conference draft choice since Weber State’s Damian Lillard was selected sixth overall by the Portland Trailblazers in the first round in 2012.
Because of Harvey's early departure, Cox will remain Eastern's all-time leading scorer a bit longer. He had 1,741 points from 1974-77, with Harvey right behind with 1,564. Stuckey scored 1,438 in two seasons (fifth all-time), including 726 in 2006 to set the school record broken by Harvey with 738 this season. Stuckey had the third-most points in school history with 712 in 2007 and Harvey is fourth with 677 in 2014.
More About Harvey . . .
Eastern Washington University junior guard Tyler Harvey was selected by Associated Press on March 30 as an honorable mention All-America selection after his record-breaking season as the leading scorer in NCAA Division I. He became the third player in EWU's 32 seasons as a member of NCAA Division I to earn honorable mention All-America honors from Associated Press. Alvin Snow was the first in 2004, and Rodney Stuckey was chosen in 2006 and 2007. Stuckey, who now plays for the Indiana Pacers in the NBA, was also an Academic All-America selection in 2007.
Previously in the 2014-15 season, Harvey was a first team Academic All-America selection, and was a repeat member of the National Association of Basketball Coaches All-District 6 squad – earning first team accolades this season after second team honors as a sophomore.
Harvey was also one of 16 finalists for the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year, and is also one of 31 finalists for the Lou Henson Award given to the nation's top mid-major player. As a result, he was recognized on the Lou Henson All-America team.
In addition, Harvey was a first team selection on the All-Big Sky Conference team for the second-straight season. He helped the Eagles close the year 26-9 on the season after finishing 14-4 in the Big Sky Conference to share the regular season title with Montana. Eastern swept through three games in the Big Sky Conference Tournament to garner the school's second NCAA Tournament appearance in school history. The Eagles finished with program bests for victories overall (26), in the Big Sky (14), on the road (11) and in non-conference play (9) in 32 seasons as a member of NCAA Division I.
A junior from Torrance, Calif., Harvey led NCAA Division I with a 23.1 scoring average, and closed the year with Big Sky and EWU single season records for season 3-pointers with 128. His 738 points were a school record and ranked fourth in league history.
In addition, Harvey was selected as the MVP of the Big Sky Conference Tournament after averaging 23.0 points, 2.7 assists and 2.0 steals per game in three games while making 10-of-24 3-point shots (41.7 percent) and 22-of-43 overall (51.2 percent). Jois was also selected to the all-tournament team after averaging 12.3 points and 8.3 rebounds per outing while making 16-of-24 shots from the field for 66.7 percent.
In equaling the Big Sky Tournament record with 42 points against Idaho, Harvey had his fifth game of the season and 11th of his career with at least 30 points, and his 40th-straight game scoring in double figures (snapped when he scored nine versus Sacramento State the next night). His 42 ranks third in school history behind the 45 of Rodney Stuckey (versus Northern Arizona on 1/5/06) and 44 of David Peed (versus UC Irvine on 12/13/88). His 42 points tied the tourney record of 42 set by Anthony Johnson of Montana in 2010, and passed the 38 Stuckey had versus Portland State in 2006, which now ranks fourth all-time.
In NCAA statistics through March 30, Harvey led NCAA Division I in scoring offense (23.1 points per game) and 3-pointers per game (4.00), and was 14th in 3-point shooting percentage (43.1 percent) and 44th in free throw percentage (.852).
Besides his on-the-court achievements, Harvey was selected on Feb. 26 as a first team selection on the 2014-15 Capital One Academic All-America® team for NCAA Division I as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Harvey was one of five players to be named to the first team, and is EWU's initial first team selection in school history. He has a 3.60 grade point average as a communications studies major. Eastern has had just three other Academic All-America selections since moving from the NAIA to the NCAA in the early 1980's. Rodney Stuckey, now playing for the Indiana Pacers in the NBA, was a third team selection in 2007 as EWU's first-ever selection as a member of Division I. Dave Henley, a graduate of Shadle Park High School in Spokane, earned second team accolades in 1982 and was a third team pick in 1981 when EWU was in NCAA Division II. On Feb. 25, Harvey was the recipient of a "Keeper of the Dream" award from EWU's Africana Studies department.
National/Local Media Stories in 2014-15 on Tyler Harvey
Story by Jake Fischer of Sports Illustrated (SI.com): http://www.si.com/nba/2015/06/18/tyler-harvey-eastern-washington-frank-harvey-damian-lillard-russell-westbrook-james-harden
Story by Chris Dortsch on NBA web site: http://www.nba.com/2015/news/features/chris_dortch/04/10/tyler-harvey-eastern-washington-guard-profile-2015-nba-draft/
Draft Profile Video by the Boston Celtics Featuring Jim Hayford: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79q3RlIn3Kk
Mock Draft and Story Published May 7 by bleacherreport.com: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2456437-2015-nba-mock-draft-round-1-predictions-projections-for-top-shooting-prospects
Hello, My Name Is: The NCAA’s Leading Scorer (by Tyler Harvey in The Cauldron): https://medium.com/the-cauldron/i-am-the-ncaa-s-leading-scorer-can-you-hear-me-now-e79a97ff4698
Story on EWU Becoming America’s Favorite Team: http://www.sbnation.com/college-basketball/2015/1/27/7922505/eastern-washington-basketball-2014-15-ncaa-tournament-tyler-harvey
Story on Tyler Harvey by Reid Forgrave of Fox Sports: http://www.foxsports.com/college-basketball/story/eastern-washington-s-tyler-harvey-grows-into-nation-s-top-scorer-030815
Story on Tyler Harvey by Jeff Goodman of ESPN: http://espn.go.com/blog/collegebasketballnation/post/_/id/103650/tyler-harvey-college-hoops-best-kept-secret
Story on Tyler Harvey by John Walters of Newsweek Magazine: http://www.newsweek.com/tyler-harvey-nations-unlikely-leading-scorer-310177
Story on Tyler Harvey by Bud Withers of the Seattle Times: http://www.seattletimes.com/sports/college/how-tyler-harvey-the-nations-leading-scorer-found-his-way-to-eastern-washington/
Story on Tyler Harvey by Zach Helfand of the Los Angeles Times: http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-tyler-harvey-20150216-story.html
Story on Tyler Harvey by Yahoo! Sports: http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/ncaab-the-dagger/how-tyler-harvey-went-from-zero-scholarships-to-the-nation-s-leading-scorer-184409702.html
Story on Tyler Harvey Listed as the Top 3-Point Shooter in the Nation: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2340158-ranking-the-deadliest-3-point-assassins-in-college-basketball-in-2014-15/page/12
Story on Tyler Harvey in SLAM! Magazine: http://www.slamonline.com/college-hs/college/tyler-harvey-eastern-washington/
Story on Tyler Harvey by Lindsay Joy from SWX/KHQ TV: http://www.swxrightnow.com/story/27853836/from-unknown-to-unmistakable-the-story-of-ewus-tyler-harvey