Shamiel Stevenson’s time at Nebraska has come to an end. The 6-foot-6, 245-pound junior from Canada has decided to enter the 2021 NBA Draft with the intent of hiring an agent.
He tweeted the news Thursday evening.
— Shamiel Stevenson (@Sham_God0) April 30, 2021
Coach Fred Hoiberg spoke about Stevenson recently, offering thoughts on the wing’s decision for another year at Nebraska.
“We’re having conversations with Shamiel about the different options that he has and just trying to be there to help make the right decision,” Hoiberg said during his late signing day Zoom call.
Stevenson averaged 5.5 points and 2.4 rebounds through the 2020-21 season at Nebraska. With that said, he also didn’t start a single game and was ninth on the team in minutes after redshirting the 2019-20 season.
Stevenson’s role fluctuated throughout the past season. He logged 12-plus minutes in Nebraska’s first six games then played five or fewer minutes in three of the next four. He played double-digit minutes for five straight games, then only reached that mark in six of Nebraska’s next 10 before not playing at all in the Big Ten Tournament against Penn State.
Stevenson provided some versatility throughout the season, stepping up defensively against South Dakota star Stanley Umude on the wing and filling in as a small-ball five at times with his strength and athleticism to provide a better finishing option around the rim than what Nebraska had before Derrick Walker became eligible. He produced some highlight-reel dunks and finishes, especially in transition.
However, two big problems held him back from earning a steady role: his perimeter jumper and his turnovers.
Stevenson didn’t take a ton of 3s at Pittsburgh (where his career began) — just 40 attempts in 36 games — but he made them at a pretty good clip (39%). This season, he shot just 6-of-32 from 3 including 1-of-17 in Nebraska’s first 15 games.
Stevenson also displayed extreme tunnel vision, and on a team that had almost nonexistent floor spacing it led to a lot of turnovers. He tried to barrel his way to the rim and it often ended in charges or defenders knocking the ball loose. His turnover rate of 23% was identical to what he did as a freshman at Pitt, though his assist percentage was a couple points higher with the Panthers.
Stevenson is the sixth scholarship player from the 2020-21 Nebraska basketball team to leave.