James Daniel saw his prolific college basketball come to a close on Saturday night as a shot from Loyola-Chicago’s Clayton Custer rattled around the rim and fell through the net, sending Tennessee home early from the NCAA Tournament.
The 2015-16 season’s leading scorer in D-1 at Howard averaged 5.6 points and 2.8 assists per game for Tennessee this year in a reserve role. He crossed over the career 2,000 point threshold this season playing for the Vols.
Today, he bids farewell with this Instagram post.
Wow. My collegiate career is officially over. I’ve just wanted to say that I throughly enjoyed my time in both DC and Knoxville. The places a can take you. I’ve learned so much about myself and life over these past 5 years. I wanted to thank God, my parents, family, friends, teammates, Coaching Staff and fans for the continued love❤️ and support. As I close out this chapter in my life I just wanted to apologize to all my former and current teammates. I know guarding me is next to near impossible ♂️but you guys really put forth great effort and I commend you guys for that . Some advice for the future, continue to do your toe raises, defensive slides and say your prayers so that one day maybe just maybe one of you will be able to stop me. TMU #BleedBlue #VFL
Daniel is the only player that will see his eligibility expire for Tennessee. With just one scholarship currently open, Rick Barnes and his staff are after a couple of guards to fill that void. Of course, that doesn’t mean that’s all the movement we’ll see this offseason.
For Daniel, he provided some veteran leadership to a backcourt that could use it. Both Jordan Bone and Lamonte Turner made more of an impact, but being able to turn to Daniel off the bench was an asset for Rick Barnes.
While he will be missed, it’s time for Bone and Turner to really step up to the plate and be consistent difference-makers from the point guard position. We’ll see if Barnes is able to add another point guard to the picture in the coming months.