What a run the 2021-22 season was for the Seattle U Redhawks men’s basketball team. It started with a coaching change three days before the season started. And then an ugly win to tip off the new season. A loss at Washington State kick started a 6-game winning streak before a weird loss to VMI at the new Climate Pledge Arena. And following a loss to UNLV at the Michelob Ultra Arena, the Redhawks won 10 of their next 11 contests.
In fact, the Seattle U Redhawks got off to an 8-0 start in WAC play. Seattle opened up with wins over Utah Valley, ACU, SFA and Sam Houston. Not too shabby. But, then the difficult trip to Phoenix and Las Cruces. And it caught up with the Redhawks who lost to both Grand Canyon and New Mexico State. But, Seattle U got the ship back in the right direction, winning six of their final eight games to clinch a share of the WAC regular season title.
That championship is the first-ever for Seattle U as members of the WAC. But, it shouldn’t surprise anyone. The Redhawks returned all five starters, added a big man, and added a sharpshooter from a Final Four squad.
However, following a head coaching change three days before the season, many probably didn’t think the Redhawks would win it all. But, associate head coach Chris Victor took the reins and it was full steam ahead.
Now, All-WAC First Team selection Darrion Trammell is gone to San Diego State. Glue guy Aaron Nettles has moved on after graduating with a degree. And backup point guard Kyree Brown took his talents from the West Coast to the East Coach at New Hampshire.
Who will step in for Chris Victor in his second season at the point guard position? That is a question that remains to be seen. But with Riley Grigsby and Cameron Tyson returning for another season plus two other starters, the Redhawks are going to be in the mix once again.
Chris Victor, Second Season
23-9 overall, 14-4 in conference play
23-9 overall, 14-4 WAC
Lost to ACU in WAC Semifinals
Darrion Trammell – Transfer (San Diego State)
Aaron Nettles – (Graduated)
Kyree Brown – Transfer (New Hampshire)
Alex Schumacher 6-3, Jr, G, Transfer (Saint Martins)
Paris Dawson 6-2, So, G, Transfer (Portland State)
Anjaylo Lloyd 6-2, Jr, G, Transfer (Shoreline CC)
Seyi Reiley 6-6, So, Transfer (City College of San Francisco)
Louis Grante-Halliday 6-7, Fr, London, England
Cameron Tyson, 6-2, R-Jr., G
Riley Grigsby, 6-6, Sr, G
Vasja Pandža, 6-8, So, G
Emeka Udenyi, 6-6, Sr, G
Viktor Rajković, 6-6, So, G
Brandton Chatfield, 6-10, R-So, F
Kobe Williamson, 6-8, So, G
What will the Seattle U Redhawks do for an encore? That is the lingering question about the outlier squad in the Pacific Northwest. And the other question that goes along with that is who will be the starting point guard?
Darrion Trammell and Kyree Brown both transferred. So, Seattle lost its leading scorer, leading assist man, team-leader in steals, and arguably its best shooter. And then the Redhawks lost the backup to said player.
Do you want to know how valuable Darrion Trammell was to Seattle U? Well, Trammell scored 1039 points – 136 more than the next guy in Cameron Tyson. Along with that, Trammell was 160-195 from the charity stripe (82.1%). Trammell made more free throws than Riley Grigsby and Cameron Tyson attempted combined. Trammell was also third in the team in defensive rebounds, first in assists and first in steals. It is a big reason why he was an All-WAC First Team selection as well as All-Defensive Team selection.
So, you can see what the Redhawks lose with Trammell’s departure.
However, Seattle U fans should be excited once again. The Redhawks return four starters. And two of those starters were two of the top-3 scorers for the Redhawks in 2021-22. Riley Grigsby and Cameron Tyson both return. And if you haven’t seen either play, you should. These two players can light it up from anywhere on the floor at any moment. According to Chris Victor, both players have the green light at any given moment.
Tyson took a whopping 279 3-pointers in 2021-22. He knocked down 105 of those attempts including making nine 3-pointers in a win over UTRGV in February.
Grigsby is the guy that can play multiple positions, can shoot the 3-pointer, play with his back to the basket, or take a defender off the dribble. And he has been at Seattle forever. At least it seems that way.
Yes, 2022-23 will be a season in which as Cameron Tyson and Riley Grigsby go, so goes Seattle U.
But, the Redhawks are deep. Big men Kobe Williamson and Brandton Chatfield return. Mr. Do-Everything Emeka Udenyi is back. Youngers Vas Pandža and Viktor Rajković are back. So, there is a ton of experience returning for Chris Victor’s second season.
And Victor is excited about his newcomers. 6-6 forward Seyi Reiley was part of a 30-win squad at City College of San Francisco. 6-2 guard Anjaylo Lloyd averaged 26.4 points at Shoreline Community College and shot nearly 47 percent from the field. Alex Schumacher comes to Seattle U after averaging 14.6 points at Saint Martins University while shooting 48 percent from the field. And Paris Dawson comes over from Portland State where he appeared in 50 games over two seasons for the Vikings.
There is depth at the guard line once again. And as we all know, Seattle U loves its guards and gives them a ton of freedom. In a guard-heavy league like the WAC, having depth at the position is vital.
The Seattle U Redhawks will head to the Pacific Ocean for Christmas. Okay, let’s be clear. The Redhawks are heading to Hawaii where they will face Utah State in the first round of the Diamondhead Classic on Dec. 22. And per the non-conference schedule for Washington, the Redhawks will travel across town to face the Huskies. We also know who the Redhawks will face in their season opener but have been asked not to release that as the Redhawks hope to release their schedule in the next week or so.