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Nijal Pearson

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Nijal Pearson
Lahti Basketball
PositionSmall forward
LeagueKorisliiga
Personal information
Born (1997-11-21) November 21, 1997 (age 23)
NationalityAmerican
Listed height6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Listed weight200 lb (91 kg)
Career information
High school
CollegeTexas State (2016–2020)
NBA draft2020 / Undrafted
Playing career2020–present
Career history
2020–2021Chorale Roanne Basket
2021–presentLahti Basketball
Career highlights and awards

Nijal Pearson (born November 21, 1997) is an American basketball player for Lahti Basketball of the Finnish Korisliiga. He competed in college basketball for the Texas State Bobcats.

Early life and high school

Pearson grew up in Beaumont, Texas and attended Central High School. As a senior, he averaged 18.5 points, seven rebounds and nine assists per game and was named the co-District 22-5A MVP and Class 5A All-State by the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches.[1][2]

College career

Pearson was a starter at small forward for the Bobcats as a true freshman and averaged 13.3 points (second highest on the team), 3.7 rebounds, and 2.4 assists per game.[3][4] As a sophomore, he led the team with 15.2 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.3 steals per game and was named to the third team all-Sun Belt Conference.[5] Pearson was named first team All-Sun Belt as a junior after averaging 16.4 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game.[6] He was named the MVP of the 2018 Portland Classic after scoring 33 point in the championship game against Portland.[7] He became Texas State's all-time leading scorer on January 18, 2020 in a 23-point performance in a win over Louisiana, breaking Charles Sharp's 60-year-old record of 1,884 points.[8][9] Pearson scored his 2,000th career point against Georgia Southern on February 20, 2020.[10] Pearson was named the Sun Belt Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year as a senior.[11] He averaged 19.4 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 2.5 assists per game.[12]

Professional career

In May 2020, Pearson agreed to terms with Chorale Roanne Basket of the LNB Pro A.[13]

On January 30, 2021, he has signed with Lahti Basketball of the Finnish Korisliiga.[14]

Career statistics

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high

College

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2016–17 Texas State 36 36 32.8 .437 .346 .721 5.7 2.4 1.4 .4 13.3
2017–18 Texas State 33 32 32.6 .394 .330 .709 6.0 2.4 1.3 .4 15.2
2018–19 Texas State 33 33 33.2 .421 .386 .690 5.1 1.4 1.4 .2 16.4
2019–20 Texas State 31 31 34.9 .423 .353 .772 5.4 2.5 1.3 .3 19.4
Career 133 132 33.4 .418 .356 .726 5.6 2.2 1.3 .3 16.0

Personal life

Pearson is the son of Stephanie Lartigue-Pearson. He has an older brother, Elijah, while his oldest brother Nico died from testicular cancer in 2010.[15] Pearson's girlfriend is Kayla McNutt. She gave birth to the couple's daughter, Nova Lael Pearson, on February 8, 2020. After playing against Appalachian State in Boone, North Carolina, Pearson took an Uber to Charlotte and took the first flight in the morning to see his newborn girl.[16]

References

  1. ^ Ramsey, Russell (June 24, 2016). "The New Faces of Bobcat Basketball". KTSWBlog.net. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  2. ^ Pongratz, Phillip (May 1, 2016). "Texas State Men's Basketball Signs Five for 2016-17 Season". smcorridornews.com. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  3. ^ Freeman, Tristan. "Sun Belt Basketball: Who are the stars for every team in 2017-18?". bustingbrackets.com. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  4. ^ "Texas State's men's basketball season ends with quarterfinal loss". Austin American-Statesman. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  5. ^ "Sun Belt Preseason Power Rankings: Will Ron Hunter and Georgia State have another March moment?". Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  6. ^ "Central grad received postseason honor". The Beaumont Enterprise. March 21, 2019. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  7. ^ "MVP Pearson sets career high; Texas St. wallops Portland". USAToday.com. Associated Press. November 24, 2018. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  8. ^ King, Drew (January 20, 2020). "Nijal Pearson Earns Scoring Title, Texas State Sweeps Louisiana Road Trip". San Marcos Daily Record. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  9. ^ "Texas State's Nijal Pearson cements status as program's all-time leading scorer". San Antonio Express-News. January 23, 2020. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  10. ^ de la Peña, Dennis. "Texas State's Nijal Pearson honored for 2,000th career point". Fox7Austin.com. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  11. ^ "Texas State's Nijal Pearson named Sun Belt Player of the Year". San Antonio Express-News. March 5, 2020. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  12. ^ "NCAA Underground: Sun Belt". Zona de Basquet (in Spanish). Retrieved April 12, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ "Nijal Pearson agreed to terms with Chorale Roanne". Sportando. May 5, 2020. Retrieved May 5, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  14. ^ "Nijal Pearson signs with Lahti Basketball". Sportando. January 30, 2021. Retrieved January 30, 2021.
  15. ^ Wangrin, Mark. "More Than Just a Number". Texas State Bobcats. Retrieved April 12, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^ Dauster, Rob (March 6, 2020). "'A feeling you can't really explain': How college basketball's new dads navigate hoops and fatherhood". NBC Sports. Retrieved March 6, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
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Nijal Pearson
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