Purdue transfer Nojel Eastern has committed to Michigan. Eastern is an elite defender that can play multiple positions. Eastern will likely sit out this season, minus a waiver but he will play for the 2021-22 season. The Wolverines lose Mike Smith, Eli Brooks, Isaiah Livers, and Austin Davis, who will all graduate after the season so they’ll welcome Eastern with open arms.
Honestly, I’m not sure I get this move from Eastern’s point of view. He spent less than 48 hours in the portal, only to commit to a team with players who will likely be playing at their best in the 2021-22 season, like Franz Wagner, Zeb Jackson, Hunter Dickinson, Terrance Williams, Adrien Nunez, and Brandon Johns Jr. With that rotation, Eastern probably won’t be able to get the amount production at Michigan as he could have gotten elsewhere.
Matt Painter went on a rant about the Graduate Transfer yesterday, and you have to wonder if he knew Eastern was going to Michigan. This has to be a little bit of a gut punch for Purdue for a 3-year player to leave for his final season to a rival school. Eastern is an elite defender great ball-handler but he could need to score more in order to get to the NBA. He likely had many calls but ends up picking Michigan after leaving Purdue less than 48 hours before.