Around mid-February, it appeared Justin Lewis was winding down his Marquette career. Lewis was playing at a level that appeared to be making him a lock to turn pro following the season. However, a lackluster finish to the season could bring Lewis back for another year at Marquette.
Lewis had a forgettable performance against North Carolina in the NCAA Tournament. He shot two for 15 from the field and scored just six points. The six points were a season-low and only the third time all year Lewis scored in single digits. The dud could feel bigger than it really is, happening in the NCAA Tournament.
53-point first half for UNC, which splashed in 10 3-pointers. Caleb Love 21 points and six 3s. Brady Manek 13 points.
It's been a nightmare for Marquette star Justin Lewis, the All-Big East first-teamer. He's 0 of 8 from the field.
— Adam Smith (@adam_smithTN) March 17, 2022
Lewis, a 6-foot-7, 245-pound forward, had a standout season overall. He averaged 16.8 points per game and nearly eight rebounds per game and was named First-Team All-Big East. He shot 35 percent from the 3-point line and 44 percent from the field. Lewis also had some big moments for Marquette. He scored 33 points in a road win over Seton Hall and he hit a game-winning three pointer on the road at Villanova.
All-Big East First-Team, per release:
Collin Gillespie, Villanova
R.J. Cole, UConn
Justin Lewis, Marquette
Jared Rhoden, Seton Hall
Julian Champagnie, St. John's
Adama Sanogo, UConn
— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) March 6, 2022
Looking at mock drafts, Lewis is either projected as a late second round pick or to go undrafted. Lewis could still boost his draft stock by testing the draft waters. He could declare for the draft, not hire an agent, and work out for teams. If he doesn’t get the feedback he desires or doesn’t improve his stock, he can return to Marquette. That is the route I anticipate Lewis will go.
Marquette has a nice nucleus of young players returning and would be led by Lewis if he returns. The Golden Eagles likely only have three departures in seniors Darryl Morsell, Greg Elliott and Kur Kuath not counting potential transfers. Marquette would have a nice backcourt contributors of Tyler Kolek, Stevie Mitchell and Kam Jones all returning. Add Lewis, Oliver Maxence-Prosper and likely more transfer portal additions and the Golden Eagles could be eyeing a return trip to the NCAA Tournament.
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