LSU Transfer Seneca Knight Explains Why He Committed To BYU Basketball
PROVO, Utah – The 2021-22 BYU basketball roster is now complete, with LSU transfer Seneca Knight joining the Cougars out of the Transfer Portal. Knight announced his commitment on his personal social media feeds on Monday, just two days after wrapping up his official visit to Provo.
“The coaches and the experience that they have along with the great players that they have over there with Caleb (Lohner), they just signed Te’Jon (Lucas), and then, of course, Alex Barcello. So being able to get out there and meeting them on the visit recently I just took, I fell in love with the place,” said Knight to KSL Sports.
Knight picked BYU over Idaho and Georgia Southern, who rounded out his top three schools.
Before Knight’s trip to BYU, the Arizona Wildcats coaching staff reached out to Knight, showing interest in the versatile prospect who only began playing organized basketball six years ago. However, instead of entertaining the late Arizona interest, Knight moved forward with his visit to BYU and later committed.
Knight is a 6-foot-7 guard/forward who can play a variety of positions on the floor. He provides the type of versatility BYU’s coaching staff was looking for when filling their final scholarship spot on the 2021-22 roster.
The basketball career for Seneca Knight before BYU
Knight grew up in New Orleans, Louisiana, and is the son of Seneca Knight Sr., a former Grambling defensive lineman who played for the legendary Eddie Robinson. Knight Sr. was a blue-chip football recruit coming out of high school in the state of Alabama.
The younger Knight opted for the hardwood instead of the gridiron. At Northside High School in Lafayette, Louisiana, where his hoops career began taking shape, he became a varsity player for the first time his junior season. Once his prep career was over, San Jose State was the only program that offered him a scholarship. So naturally, he pounced on that opportunity.
At San Jose State, Knight played two full seasons with the Spartans, earning third-team All-MWC honors his sophomore campaign; he averaged 17.1 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. After opting out of last season due to COVID-19, Knight returned to Louisiana, transferring to LSU this past January.
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BYU acted quickly in the Transfer Portal
When Seneca Knight entered his name in the Transfer Portal the first time, members of the BYU coaching staff reached out to Knight to express their interest. After Knight re-entered the Portal this off-season, BYU coaches were hitting him up instantly.
“So literally, my name was probably in the Portal for about 10-15 minutes,” Knight said. “Somebody [from BYU] reached out to me on Twitter. They DM’d me. I responded back, saying, ‘Yes, sir. I’m interested to hear more about the program.’ Then one of the coaches called maybe 25 to 45 minutes later, and that’s how we got to build a relationship from there.”
Knight built up the relationship with BYU coaches to the point where he locked in an official visit to Provo for this past weekend. He and his family made the trip to BYU for the first time and were blown away by the program and the scenery in Utah.
“Coach Nick (Robinson) was my host and it was a great experience. We loved it,” Knight said. “I didn’t think Utah was going to be that beautiful. It has a reservoir not too far from campus; I love nature and scenery.”
Official Visit chats over NBA 2k sealed the deal for Seneca Knight
Along with the sights around the Utah Valley area, Knight was also able to get to know the current members of the BYU basketball team during some sessions of NBA 2K.
“Getting with Alex Barcello, getting with Te’Jon, getting with Caleb, and you know, talking to them about their experiences at BYU and how everything’s going and how excited they’d be if I were to come there, it just made me like, hey, I love this place. They’ve got a great team, it has the scenery, and it just offers so much,” said Knight.
Knight added, “Coach Nick was a great host, a really amazing host, showed me around everything. They wanted to emphasize on this decision being my best decision and they didn’t want me to have any regrets. Like I didn’t get to see or talk about this. So they emphasized that, so I could have all certainty while making a decision, along with having a great group of guys that they had.”
Knight hopes to get settled into BYU as soon as next week. When he arrives, BYU inherits a versatile rebounder that can score for himself and others with his passing ability. Where he looks to improve is his catch-and-shoot three-point shooting. So far in his collegiate career, Knight has only shot 29% from beyond the arc.
Eyes set on the NCAA Tournament
With last year being a free season of eligibility due to COVID-19, Knight enters the upcoming year as a junior. Since he already had one undergrad transfer to LSU, Knight will need a waiver to play immediately. He plans to pursue a waiver to play this year.
If eligible to play immediately, Knight will work to be a big piece to a program looking to get BYU back to another NCAA Tournament appearance.
“We sat down and watched some film with Te’Jon and Alex Barcello, who are going to be two major pieces this upcoming year,” Knight said. “So to be able to, you know, come in and play my role and help out as much as possible and make that tournament run. They obviously are a great team before I got here, and I’m just trying to do my part to help it be even better.”
Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.
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