West Virginia star Oscar Tshiebwe has entered the transfer portal. Despite taking a nosedive in production this season. Tshiebwe will be highly coveted in the transfer portal. With the vote for a one-time eligibility waiver to likely pass soon, it’s safe to assume Tshiebwe will play all of next season, but even if that vote doesn’t pass, he’ll play in the 2nd semester next season.
Kentucky Wildcats: The Cats have shown recently they like to add big-guy transfer, starting with Reid Travis, Nate Sestina, and now Olivier Sarr. Looking at next season’s roster, it’s fair to assume Olivier Sarr could return for the extra season due to him not being a real pro prospect. Isaiah Jackson is as good as gone next year, and he could end up being a lottery pick; this will be the lone season in Lexington. Cam Fletcher was asked to leave the team by Cal earlier in the season and has since returned, but it’s fair to wonder what will be in store for Fletcher next season. Lance Ware could go to the NBA but likely to return to Lexington also. Tshiebwe is different from any transfer that Kentucky has added recently, a guy coming into the season that was regarded as a potential All-American. Tshiebwe was in Huggins doghouse for lack of effort this season, and the writing was seemingly on the wall. The transfer makes sense. If Kentucky adds a guy like Tshiebwe, Devin Askew, Dontaie Allen, Lance Ware, with young bigs like Damion Collins and Bryce Hopkins come in next year. And it’s also worth noting, UK was on Tshiebwe’s final list coming into College.
Arizona State Sun Devils: The way Bobby Hurley loves playing (fast and through the guards) has limited what some of the bigs can do, but Tshiebwe is an elite offensive rebounder; with missed threes, you can get some great chances at offensive rebounds. Tshiebwe would be the Sun Devils’ most talented big in the Hurley era and take less pressure off Chris Osten & Jalen Graham. If you can get a former five-star to play that five spot, grab offensive rebounds, and have a reliable piece inside, it’s an interesting proposition for both sides.
Villanova Wildcats: The Wildcats will lose Jeremiah Robinson-Earl to the NBA following the season, leaving a hole for Villanova. Tshiebwe doesn’t exactly fit the way Jay Wright likes to play with floor spacing and shooting threes, but when you can get a talent like Tshiebwe, you’ll figure it out. You won’t find a coach that knows how to get the absolute most out of his players more than Jay Wright knows how to players, and their “ranking” coming into College doesn’t matter to him. If Tshiebwe wants to win & learn how to become a complete Basketball player, you have to assume Villanova would be involved.
Kansas Jayhawks: Former Kansas big-man Udoka Azubuike will likely be the pro comparison for Tshiebwe whenever he opts to turn the pro route, and if Tshiebwe can turn into Azubuike, it’s a win for both sides. Both players love beating others using their physicality, and already being familiar with how to dominate the B1G 12, Tshiebwe has to be interested. Kansas offered the big-man in High School also.
Illinois Fighting Illini: The Illini could lose 7-footer Kofi Cockburn to the NBA Drafr=t after the season, opening a spot for a transfer to come in. The next star in waiting for big-man isn’t currently in Champaigne and will come from elsewhere, whether it be the transfer portal or HS recruiting. Brad Underwood has shown he knows how to use old-school bigs with Cockburn, and Tshiebwe would be in line, as he and the Illinois staff already have a relationship as they too recruited him out of High School.
Coach Cal has to be salivating at the thought of someone who looks like he could play O-Line for Alabama being his five-man next season.