Friday, March 23, 2012

Parker Kelly (#10) Season Retrospective and Outlook for 2012-2013

Parker Kelly (#10)
photo from
Parker Kelly the 6’4” true Freshman Walk-on from Spokane Washington had a really solid freshman season at times playing as the 6th man, in practical terms stepping in as the “starter” for the injured Collin Chiverton.  No Eagle shot better from the Free Throw line (91.3%) or from beyond the arc (44.9%).

Kelly’s season can pretty easily be broken into a tale of two halves.  He did not play in the team’s opening game vs Gonzaga, but during the following 16 games he averaged 10.2 minutes and 2.1 pts (including a high of 12 vs D3 Linfield).  He also totaled 14 rebounds, 4 assists, 6 steals and 1 block during that stretch.

The second half of Kelly’s season consists of the Eagles’ final 14 games during which he really stepped up.  On January 14th at Northern Colorado Kelly played 21 minutes scoring 12 points of 3 of 4 shooting from beyond the arc.  Including that game, Parker averaged 22.3 minutes, 7.5 pts and 1.5 rebounds per game.  He also added a total of 9 steals and 8 assists during that stretch.  More than the stats though, Kelly embraced a role as designated shooter especially in the teams victory over Northern Colorado on February 15th where Kelly hit three 3 pointers in the closing minutes to help give the Eagles a victory 79-76.  Dennis Patchin on his radio broadcast said it best:

Parker also really stepped up on February 2nd scoring the Eagles final 8 points in victory over Northern Arizona including a very clutch shot with 4 seconds on the shot clock, we’ll go again to Dennis Patchin, this time for his post game interview with Coach Hayford.  Parker Kelly is covered beginning at the 3:12 mark if you want to skip ahead.

Perhaps his biggest moments came in defeat against Weber State on February 11th, when he scored 17 pts setting his career high and earned him EWU Eagle Eye Player of the Week.

Going into 2012-2013 I think there has to be some consideration from the coaching staff to red-shirt him and give him a year to further develop his skills especially on defense.  If they were going to red-shirt Kelly, this coming season is the one to do it in, but at the end of the day Parker is good enough to see significant playing time and be a really big contributor for the Eagles in 2012-2013.  His will be a very interesting story to watch as the Eagles prepare for the upcoming season and add this year’s transfers and recruits into the mix.

Should Kelly wind up on the active squad next season I think we can expect him to play a lot as the first man off the bench filling in at the 2 and 3 spots, much like he did this year.  Parker’s confidence shooting and ability to hit the big shots in the clutch give him the potential to be one of the Eagles best scoring options.  I can imagine a line-up featuring Kelly and Chiverton on the wings really forcing defense to spread out and defend the three point line which would open nice lanes for dribble penetration and attacking the paint.