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Senior Day Spotlight: Aundre Hyatt

Junior forward Aundre Hyatt's incredible work ethic was honored on Sunday during the Rutgers men's basketball team's annual Senior Day.  – Photo by Ice You

In this Senior Day Spotlight, The Daily Targum highlights the University's athletes who are being honored at senior day and have made an impact for their respective teams.

Junior forward Aundre Hyatt was honored on Sunday during the Rutgers men's basketball team's Senior Day game against Northwestern.

Hyatt joined the Scarlet Knights (18-13, 10-10) after spending three seasons at Louisiana State University (LSU), redshirting as a freshman. Since joining Rutgers, Hyatt has been vital to its success both when coming off the bench and when in a starting role.

Hyatt came out of Miller High School in White Plains, New York, as a three-star recruit. While he didn’t end up with the Knights right away, Rutgers did offer him a scholarship when he was in high school. Hyatt was a hot commodity out of high school, as he received other offers from notable schools such as Florida State, Seton Hall, Louisville, Oregon, Pittsburgh and Providence.

In the two years he played with the Tigers, he was not able to establish a stable role, as he played in 53 total games and was a starter in 17 games. He showed up when it mattered most, though, as he posted LSU career-highs in points, rebounds and blocks in the Tigers' first-round NCAA Tournament game in the 2020-2021 season. In that matchup, he finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks.

Hyatt entered the transfer portal before the 2021-2022 season and found his way to the Banks.

"Coming to Rutgers was probably the best decision I made," he said.

This certainly showed in his time on the court, as he is currently averaging 9.3 points per game (PPG) for the season and has averaged 6.7 PPG overall in his two seasons on the Banks.

Last season, Hyatt started in just one game and averaged 12.8 minutes per game (MPG). This season he has started 17 of the team’s 31 games and has nearly doubled his MPG.

"He waited behind Ron Harper (Jr.), now Mawot (Mag), and then he gets in the starting role and he’s just been unbelievable," said head coach Steve Pikiell. "He’s a great student and a great kid."

Hyatt, like many other players, has developed relationships with the Knights coaching staff that go beyond basketball.

"I appreciate everything that coach Pike (Pikiell) and the rest of the staff does for me," Hyatt said. "Having that closeness with the staff means a lot to me."

Hyatt noted that he sees many members of the staff more as big brothers than coaches. Relationships like these are what helped bring Hyatt to Rutgers and will surely be missed if this season winds up as his last.

While he did walk for senior night and was honored by the team and the fans, Hyatt still holds another year of eligibility to play college basketball.

"I haven’t made any decisions yet," Hyatt said. "I’m going to play it out and see how the season goes."

Hyatt has been a crucial transfer for Pikiell as he is able to shoot three-point shots, finish inside and play strong paint defense. With the season entering postseason play, he said that he is hopeful for what is to come.

"Hopefully, we make more memories," Hyatt said.

For more updates on the Rutgers basketball team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

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