If you spend any time on Twitter, pretty much every day you will see a new tweet from Jon Rothstein mentioning a player who has entered the transfer portal and the teams they have already hear from. Inevitably, Gonzaga is on that list.
Welcome to the newest level of recruitment in college hoops—the transfer portal! Last season, nearly 1,700 players entered the portal to change schools. This season, we will probably shoot well past that mark, partially thanks to the extra year of eligibility provided due to COVID.
One of the wacky things about the transfer portal, however, is dealing with the other gorilla in the room—early departures for the pros.
The transfer portal largely benefits the rich getting richer, and the Gonzaga Bulldogs are one of those lucky squads. However, the Zags also don’t have as many clear cut NBA decisions made as other teams do, and that is why patience is the key for the next couple of months.
We know that Drew Timme has declared for the draft, albeit with an agent that allows him to retain his eligibility. Chet Holmgren theoretically is as good as gone thanks to his projection as a high lottery pick. Will Andrew Nembhard and Rasir Bolton return for one more bonus year? Probably not, but more wild things have happened in the world.
The Zags roster is too fluid at the moment. It either could use one more guard, or if Bolton or Nembhard decides to return, will be just fine. Everyone is drooling over Fardaws Aimaq and his double-double production. That would rise to the moon if he came to Gonzaga, or would be largely redundant if Timme returns for his senior season.
Of course, you don’t say no if Terrance Shannon Jr. or Nijel Pack express interest in what Spokane has to offer. If the Zags weren’t reaching out to every big name player entering the transfer portal, they would be approaching the next season incorrectly. However, it is important not to read too far beyond that. If Gonzaga is saying hello, they are saying hello.
Until some of the current roster pieces begin to reveal their next steps, we shouldn’t expect too much movement in the portal for the Zags. Welcome to the new waiting game in college hoops.