Valparaiso junior guard Darien Walker (Chicago, Ill./Simeon [John A. Logan/Arizona Western]) has been named a finalist for the Riley Wallace Award, presented annually to the nation’s top first-year transfer player, by CollegeInsider.com.
Walker made an immediate impact on the Crusaders in his first season in a Valpo uniform, finishing the year second on the team in scoring, averaging 10.7 points and 4.6 rebounds per game. He pushed his numbers to 12.3 points and 4.9 rebounds per contest in Horizon League play, helping the Crusaders capture the league regular season and tournament titles and return to the NCAA Tournament. Walker scored in double figures 21 times, including in 13 of 16 Horizon League games.
The award is named in honor of former Centenary and Hawai’i head coach Riley Wallace, who was known to welcome transfers into his program at Hawai’i. Wallace led the Hawai’i program to nine postseason appearances and is the program’s all-time winningest coach.
Walker is one of 26 finalists for the Riley Wallace Award, and is the second member of the Crusader program to be named a finalist for one of the CollegeInsider.com awards, as Bryce Drew was previously tabbed a finalist for the Hugh Durham award. The award winners will be announced at the CollegeInsider.com Awards Banquet on April 3 in Indianapolis, site of the 2015 NCAA Men's Division I Final Four.