Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Update on . . . Erving Walker

Erving Walker, a soon-to-be Florida Gator, was kind enough to take some time to talk with me last week and give me an update on how he is doing. Walker is undersized for a basketball player--he stands just 5'8--but the Christ the King (NY) senior makes up for it with his talent on the court. I asked Erving about how he thinks playing for UF Head Coach Billy Donovan, a small guard in his own right when he played, will help him: "I think that it [will] help me a lot . . . [and he will be able to] give me tips." Points guards such as Walker love to have big men to throw the ball to down low, and Walker will certainly have a load of those by his sophomore year in Gainsville. Billy Donovan is putting together a monster recruiting class for the class of 2009 that includes Georgetown transfer and former high school star 6'9 Vernon Macklin, 6'10 Erik Murphy, and 6'9 DeShawn Painter. In addition, Donovan's 2008 haul includes 6'8 Allan Chaney, 6'10 Kenneth Kadji, and 6'10 Eloy Vargas. I asked Walker what he thought about the big man commitments that Donovan has already received from the class of '09 studs: "I think that [is] great, especially [for] me, being a little guy, you can never have too many big men. . . . I already have a relationship with Erik Murphy." Along with these six bigs, the Gators already have sophomore-to-be Alex Tyus on the roster. Florida will not be hurting for height while Walker is there. Walker won't have to worry about carving out some playing time from all the big men, but he will need to try to fit in the guard rotation, and with sophomores-to-be Jai Lucas and Nick Calathes there, playing time may be scarce for Walker as a freshman in 2008-09. "Coach [Donovan] told me [that] the playing is there. I just have to come in and work hard," is what Walker said when I asked him what he thinks his playing time will be like his first year at UF. Some big news about the Gators a few months ago was Billy Donovan's punishment of the squad, which included not allowing them to wear UF gear or use the practice facility. I inquired of Walker what he thought of the steps that his future coach used for his team: "At first, I though thought it was pretty harsh, but I thought, 'Coach, he knows what he [is] doing." So, it appears that Erving will be able to handle whatever Donovan throws his way. Walker will be one of the Player Diary writers here, so you will get to know him a lot better as time progresses.

Note- player information is from

No comments: