The college basketball transfer portal can change the balance of power ahead of the new season. It’s a chance for rosters to be reshaped and for talents to showcase their ability in fresh surroundings, perhaps switching schools for the chance at more minutes.
The College basketball lines today tab the Tar Heels as the title favorites in 2023. They are closely followed by Kentucky and Arkansas. The betting markets could look very different once the biggest stories in the transfer portal have been resolved, however. It’s a chance for programs to get an influx of high-upside talent, and fill holes on the roster that were either exposed last season or were created by departures.
Let’s take a look at the top transfer portal stories.
It’s an offseason of rebuilding for LSU, and they landed a real coup when they secured KJ Williams. Named Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year last season and ranked among the top transfers, Williams reunites with Matt McMahon after the pair worked together for several seasons at Murray State.
Williams is a legitimate stretch big. Standing at over 6’8, he hits over 35% of his outside shots for his career, and follows a couple of other former Murray State players to LSU.
Having seen their roster decimated, this is a big-time acquisition for LSU, and it’ll be fascinating to see how Williams gets on.
One of the best guards in the portal and the reigning Big 12 Freshman of the Year, Tyrese Hunter is a man in demand. He’s coming off a stellar season with Iowa State, and will bring elite defense to his new team.
Only 6’0 and with an inconsistent outside shot, however, Hunter is far from the complete package. The fit on his new team will go a long way to deciding if entering the transfer portal was the right call.
Kendric Davis has committed to Memphis after departing SMU. Davis averaged 19.4 points, 4.8 rebounds, 4.4 assists and shot 37.2% from three-point land – he was immediately the best player available when he opted to enter the transfer portal.
As the reigning AAC Player of the Year, Davis’ talents are well known around the nation. He’s a knockdown shooter from the outside and can get to the rim almost at will. Pair that with above-average playmaking and he could be in for a huge year in Tennessee.
Opting to leave Kansas State for Miami, sharpshooter Nijel Pack was third in the Big-12 in scoring last season and also earned All-Big 12 First Team honors.
Clearly one of the best shooters in college basketball, Pack is a valuable player for that alone. He’s got more in his locker, though, and we can expect to see him to be given plenty of ball handling responsibility in Miami.
Brother of Pelicans forward Larry Nance Jr, Pete Nance has entered the college basketball transfer portal and declared for the 2022 NBA Draft. The younger Nance is labelled as a late-second round pick by most draft experts, and he’ll have no shortage of suitors if he opts to return to college.
The Athletic recently placed Nance third among the best players still available. Only time will tell what the future holds for the Akron native, but he’s definitely a name to watch in coming days and weeks.