(Wednesday, June 30th, 2020) It was announced this afternoon that forward Jordan Hall will be returning to Saint Joseph’s (SJU) for the 2021-2022 season, per Jon Rothstein. Hall had originally announced his decision to transfer from SJU back on April 28th of this year. After his initial transfer announcement, Hall revealed that he would be going to Texas A&M to start his sophomore year. It was only a short time after his decision to transfer to A&M that Hall then decided to enter his name in the NBA draft.
However, that is all history now as 6’8 point forward intends to withdraw his name from the NBA draft and return to the place where he started his college basketball career. In addition to his withdrawal from the NBA draft, Hall has also decided to back track on his decision to transfer to A&M and instead return to Hawk Hill.
The return of Jordan Hall is a major turning point for a Saint Joe’s roster in need of corner stone pieces. Jordan Hall was SJU’s main point guard for majority of the 2020-2021 season. During which he averaged 5.7 assists, 10.6 points, and 5.9 rebounds. The departure of a player like Hall left Saint Joe’s fans wondering how the team would be able to compete this season. Especially since SJU would need to train up another freshman point guard in Erik Reynolds.
However, with the return of Hall puts that all to rest. He will now occupy the back court with freshman Erik Reynolds. Coach Lange will now work with the duo to build one of the most dynamic backcourts in SJU history.
A Pivotal Event in Billy Lange’s Tenure
The return of Jordan Hall is by far the most pivotal moment of Billy Lange’s SJU tenure. The details around Hall’s decision to withdraw from the NBA draft are not yet available, so it is unclear on why he decided to leave the NBA draft. Because of that I am unsure how much Lange played a part in that decision. However, I will speculate, that at a minimum, Lange deployed his recruiting skills to entice Hall to return to SJU rather than go to Texas A&M.
This is a major development for Coach Lange. Lange was heading into his third season at Saint Joe’s with no “number one” option at point guard. While Saint Joe’s did have Erik Reynolds, Taylor Funk, Cam Brown, and Jack Forrest, the departure of the two main ball handlers in Hall and Daly was a major for SJU to clear. Yet, with the return of Hall Saint Joe’s can now look to build off the momentum from the end of the 2020-21 season. All while avoiding the need to start from scratch.
Finally, Coach Lange will now have an extremely diverse lineup to work with. Want to go small? Put in Hall at center, with Brown, Moore, Forrest, and Reynolds around him. Want to go big? Start Reynolds, Hall, Funk, Obinna, and Coleman. Coach Lange will have a range of lineups to run through, all with different combinations of skills and size.
This is all possible with the return of the dynamic Jordan Hall. Coach Lange has successfully recruited his best player to return to Hawk Hill and this should not be overlooked. There are not many coaches in college basketball who can pull that off. Yet, Lange found a way to do it, and in the process earned much needed grace with the SJU fans.