Aug. 20, 2012
Former Loyola University Maryland forward Shane Walker has signed a professional contract with AS Apollon Patras and will begin his career this week in Greece's A1 League.
Walker, who graduated with his degree in communications in May, helped lead the Greyhounds to the NCAA Tournament for just the second time in school history. He was the only player to start all 33 games for Head Coach Jimmy Patsos and averaged 9.0 points and 6.3 rebounds per game as a senior.
"We are thrilled for Shane as he's starting his pro career in Europe," Patsos said. "Shane was a great leader for us and did all of the little things necessary for us to win a championship and reach the NCAA Tournament. He made things happen for us on offense and defense, and he molded himself into someone that is going to be a very good player over there."
The native of Northhampton, England, finished his Loyola career ranked second on the all-time blocked shots list with 135 after swatting 42 last season. He also had 50 assists, 23 steals and made 25 3-pointers as the Greyhounds rolled to a 24-9 record.
After beginning his collegiate career at Maryland, Walker transferred to Loyola and stepped onto the court for the first time in 2008-2009. In three seasons, he scored 869 points and made 68 3-pointers.
His 604 career rebounds are 11th most in program history, and his 6.63 rebounds per game is 10th. Walker, who was an All-Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Third Team honoree in 2010-2011, also recorded three of the top nine single-season blocked shot performances in school history.
Walker is one three former Loyola players under Jimmy Patsos who will soon begin their seasons in Europe. Andre Collins (Turkey) and Michael Tuck (England) will return to the leagues where they have excelled in recent years.
Apollon Patras, which is located in the city of Patras, Greece, finished the 2011-2012 with a 20-10 record in the Greek A2 League, garnering promotion to the A1 Division.