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Villanova Basketball 2019 Player Recap: Eric Paschall

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After transferring in from Fordham, Paschall made the most out of his time at Villanova.

NCAA Basketball: Big East Tournament Final-Villanova vs Seton Hall Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Eric Paschall’s Career Stats

Season School G GS MP FG FGA FG% 3P 3PA 3P% FT FTA FT% RPG APG STL BLK TOV PF PTS
Season School G GS MP FG FGA FG% 3P 3PA 3P% FT FTA FT% RPG APG STL BLK TOV PF PTS
2014-15 Fordham 27 27 31.2 5.6 13.3 0.419 1.7 5.3 0.315 3.1 4 0.794 5.5 1 0.8 0.4 2.8 2 15.9
2016-17 Villanova 36 8 21.7 2.8 5.4 0.513 0.5 1.9 0.279 1.1 1.6 0.695 3.8 0.6 0.5 0.5 1.2 2.5 7.2
2017-18 Villanova 38 38 29.8 3.8 7.1 0.533 0.9 2.7 0.356 2.1 2.5 0.813 5.3 2.2 0.9 0.6 1.7 2.4 10.6
2018-19 Villanova 36 36 36.1 5.4 12.1 0.447 1.9 5.6 0.348 3.8 5 0.746 6.1 2.1 0.7 0.5 2.3 2.1 16.5

The Breakdown

After exploding onto the scene with a strong performance in the 2018 NCAA Tournament--highlighted by a hot-shooting night in the Final Four game against Kansas--the excitement and anticipation was there for Eric Paschall, especially to see how he’d follow up in a much bigger role as a senior co-captain.

It appeared Paschall picked up from where he left off in the 2017-18, leading the way in a 100-77 season-opening victory against Morgan State, where he scored a game-high 26 points. After a couple of bumps in a few games that followed that performance, Paschall started to pick it up again--racking up boards, being a bruiser on both ends of the court, knocking down threes, and serving up the rim-rattling highlight slam dunks.

The transition to playing a more prominent role on the court seemed like a seamless one for him. It was a career season for Paschall, who averaged 16.5 points and 6.1 rebounds.

Although he admitted to having to adjust to taking a more vocal role, having his best friend Phil Booth helped, as well as sitting behind some of the other Villanova standouts in recent years.

”I was behind a lot of great leaders like Josh, Darryl, and Kris--and then Mikal and Jalen--so I feel like Phil and I have embraced that during our team here, during our senior year,” Paschall said. “I feel like I had to break out of a shell of being quiet. I’m known as a quiet guy, but definitely became more vocal. Definitely tried to lead by example on the court and doing the little things.”

Paschall certainly led by example, as he and Booth never seemed to get off the court. He dialed up some key performances this season, like keeping the ‘Cats afloat in their win against St. John’s at the Pavilion, carrying the team in the first half until Booth took over in the second. There was also that time he put on a show from the three-point line against UConn at Madison Square Garden and then on the road to fend off Hinkle Magic. He barely missed against Providence on Feb. 13, and then had a double-double against the Friars in a rematch during the Big East Tournament quarterfinal. He also had the buzzer-beating tip-in to force overtime against the Musketeers in the semifinals, en route to the Big East’s first-ever conference tournament three-peat.

He wrapped up his college basketball career with 1,687 points. 1,257 of those were in his three seasons as a ‘Cat. He hit his 1,000th point in a Villanova jersey during the lopsided 80-52 victory over Seton Hall on Jan. 27.

Looking Back and Onwards to the Future

Although Paschall’s final season ended in tears, with his heart broken on the podium after the NCAA Tournament loss to Purdue, he has a lot to be proud of.

”I was just sad to not play in the Villanova jersey anymore,” Paschall said after the second round game. “I thank Coach Wright for everything he’s done for me. WIthout him, I wouldn’t be here. I guess losing in your senior year--but at the end of the day--I loved Villanova. I mean, everything they’ve done for me, ever little thing, that’s all the emotions that were happening.”

He’ll be looking back at his time at Villanova very fondly, with a smile.

He came to Villanova in the fall of 2015, after spending one year as a standout freshman at Fordham. Paschall opted to take his talents to the Main Line over the likes of Providence, Kansas and Florida.

During the 2016 National Championship run, Paschall was making an impact behind the scenes at practice, as a player undergoing his redshirt transfer year. In his first eligible season, he showed off his athleticism and ability to dunk, while gradually improving on the defensive end.

Last season, he got to make his mark as a full-time starter. He struggled with his three-point shot in the first half of the season, before finding his long-range stroke for the second half of it. Paschall continued to evolve as an all-around player, and it particularly showed in the NCAA Tournament. He didn’t get to play in Villanova’s previous trip to the Final Four and quickly made up for lost time with a legendary performance against Kansas, where he finished with 24 points on 10-of-11 shooting. Paschall drained the three-pointer that broke VMI’s record for most threes in a single season for a Division I college basketball team. Villanova won the title and he got to proudly say he helped contribute to it on the court, after having to sit out the previous run.

Paschall joins an exclusive club of Villanovans that have two championship rings. His Final Four performance is written into Villanova Basketball lore, and he certainly has a lot to be proud of.

Now, the question for Paschall is, “What’s next?”

Paschall has seen his name pop up in various mock drafts since the season began. So far, the general consensus seems to be somewhere in between late-first round and mid-second round. ESPN’s Jonathan Givony--formerly of DraftXpress--had Paschall going 33rd to Phoenix in his last mock draft back in mid-March, knocking him down a few slots after spending most of the season somewhere in the 20s.

NBADraft.net’s recent projections from last week have Paschall going 39th to New Orleans. With his name consistently showing up on the radar over the last year, it seems like there’s a pretty good chance Paschall gets drafted, and we’ll have another NBA ‘Cat to keep a close eye on.