EVANSVILLE, Ind. — Terrell Lewis plans to continue his college basketball career.
The 2014-15 Ohio Valley Freshman of the Year is of out eligibility, but will seek a waiver to play a sixth year in 2019-20 after missing nearly all of the last two seasons due to injury.
That sixth year, if approved, won’t be at EIU, Lewis’ father, Terrell Sr., told the JG-TC.
“We feel like we had a good run at Eastern Illinois,” Lewis Sr. said. “But we want to finish it up somewhere else.”
The 5-foot-7 Lewis played in two games in November and missed the rest of the year. He played in eight games during the 2017-18 season before sustaining a season-ending ankle injury.
Prior to the injuries, Lewis started 92 games for EIU from 2014-17. He instantly became one of EIU’s most important players. As a freshman, he shot 51.9 percent on 3-pointers, which led the OVC. He was second in the OVC with 5.7 assists per game. He ranked in the nation’s top 30 in assists and assist-turnover ratio (2.9-to-1).
In 2015-16, Lewis played in 94.7 percent of EIU’s minutes, a rate exceeded by only four other Division I players.
“He’s always been a warrior,” EIU coach Jay Spoonhour said earlier this season.
In three-plus seasons at EIU, Lewis became the ninth player in OVC history with 1,000 points and 500 assists in his career. He is the only player in EIU history to accomplish that feat. He is a career 40.7 percent 3-point shooter.
“Eastern Illinois has been good to us,” Lewis Sr. said.
The NCAA grants sixth-year waivers if an institution can prove a player lost two years of participation due to circumstances beyond their control, such as injury. The institution has to apply for the waiver on behalf of the player. That process will not start for Lewis until he chooses his next school.
EIU has two open scholarships for 2019-20.