Seton Hall Pirates teams from the early 2000s usually bring back memories of Samuel Dalembert and Eddie Griffin. Those two players, especially Dalembert, went on to have solid NBA careers and that is why they will be the first two players to come to mind. However, this man was the most consistent player on his teams and also the leader as the point guard should be. That team would not have made the deep run they did in the Big East Tournament without one of the greatest point guards in Seton Hall history, Andre Barrett.
The position of point guard is most important position on the basketball court and after Shaheen Holloway graduated from Seton Hall in 2000, many around the team were skeptical as to who would fill his shoes in the years to come. Barrett picked up right where Holloway had left off as they actually averaged similar totals offensively in their respective careers. Little did the fans and coaches know, they would be treated to four more years of great point guard play.
The New York City native, in four years with The Hall, averaged 15.3 points per game while dishing out 5.4 assists per game. His durability was never in question as he played in 30 or more games during every season in South Orange, New Jersey.
Barrett was selected to the All-Big East team twice during his tenure with the Pirates and was also a co-winner of the 2004 Metropolitan Writers Association’s Haggerty Award for the best Division I player in the New York area. During that senior season the 5-foot-10 point guard had the best year of his college career. He led the Pirates with 17.3 points and 5.9 assists per game, both career bests.
That same year Barrett led The Hall to the NCAA Tournament where they went on to knock off 9th-seeded Arizona who while seeded lower, were the favorite to knock off the Pirates. In that game, Barrett led the team with 19 points and six assists, which were vital in getting his team to the second round. He made many key plays in the come-from-behind victory.
The Hall was down at the half in this game and Barrett stepped up to lead his team with words of encouragement during the break. "This team never gave up on each other," said Barrett, "We went into the locker room and said, 'We're down but we have an opportunity to win this game. There's no way we've come this far to lose this game."
Barrett showed true leadership during that trying moment and woke his teammates up. He brought the team together with his words and then with his play on the court. It takes talent to play, but teams also need players to set the example and lead by it. Barrett showed that he was always there for his team and this moment is the culmination of what he brought to this program.
By the end of his stellar Pirate career, Barrett became one of four Pirates ever to score 1,000 points, pull down 400 rebounds and pass out 400 assists in his career. He also finished with the most minutes played in school history with 4,296.
In 2013, Seton Hall University inducted Barrett into the Athletics Hall of Fame, an honor that not many basketball players or coaches can lay claim to. Reiterating how much he meant to the basketball team as well as the school community itself.
Since Barrett’s graduation in 2004, the blue and white have run through a number of point guards hoping to get the same, if not similar results, but have not seen anyone lead a team quite like Barrett could. For this upcoming season, Barrett, like many other Pirates alumni and fans, will watch on as guards like Sterling Gibbs and Jaren Sina try to duplicate what Barrett brought The Hall during the early 2000s.
Until they or another guard eclipse Barrett he remains one of the greatest point guards in school history and will always be the best Seton hall player from the previous decade.