What Does the Future Hold for Notre Dame's Jerian Grant?

By Jeff Kelly

It was a rough weekend for Jerian Grant as he saw his Notre Dame squad collapse in the final 58 seconds against No. 3 Ohio State, and it was announced a day later that he was not just off of the team, but no longer a student at the school. So what’s next for Harvey Grant‘s son?

In the statement that was released by Grant and in all likelihood prepared at least with some input from his family, he said that he hopes to re-enroll at Notre Dame and finish up his playing career. And while that’s a noble pursuit, that doesn’t mean it’s guaranteed to happen. As a senior, he could very easily elect to simply enter the NBA Draft next summer, and chances are he’ll get selected either in the late first or early second round.

The 6-foot-5 Grant is athletic and has a solid shooting stroke, and he distributes the ball extremely well for his size. For teams eyeing a combo guard or simply big point guard, he could be exactly what they’re looking for. This year, he was averaging 19.0 points and 6.2 assists per game while putting up career-best shooting numbers, including 51.8 percent overall and 40.8 percent from three.

His shooting numbers have gone up every year that he’s been with the Irish, going from 38 percent as a sophomore (he did not play as a freshman) to 40.6 percent last year, and then ballooning up over 50 percent this year. The evolution and continued development of his overall offensive game has to have caught the eye of pro scouts.

The fact that he’s averaged at least 5.0 assists in all three of his seasons is another eye-popping number, considering he’s been playing at the shooting guard spot for the vast majority of his time on the court.

Getting booted from Notre Dame is a big hurdle for Grant to overcome, especially coming from such a well-respected basketball family that also includes his uncle Horace Grant and probable lottery pick, younger brother Jerami Grant of Syracuse. His older brother Jerai Grant also played at Clemson, and there’s another younger brother coming along as well.

This has to be an embarrassment for the family, but as Jerian is a senior, it really could not have come at a better time, if it had to happen at all.

He’s on track to earn his degree once he can get re-enrolled, and if he wants to try playing again, he still has another year of eligibility. However, that leads to the tricky part of this equation: because of this hiccup, he would have to petition the NCAA to allow him to get back one more semester, otherwise he’d only be playing half of a year next season.

With that in mind, and the fact that he’ll be 22 by the time the next season even begins, the time may simply be now for Jerian to try to take his game to the next level. After all, he can always earn his degree in the offseason as so many other early entrants to the NBA have done in the past.

Whether it’s in the NBA (which is likely) or in Europe, there’s a pretty good chance the next time you see Jerian Grant playing ball will be with him in a pro uniform, and not the blue and gold of the Fighting Irish.

Jeff is an ACC basketball writer on RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @jekelish and like him on Facebook.

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