Former Utah Valley big man Fardaws Aimaq, one of the top players in the transfer portal, has narrowed his final destination to five potential schools: Washington, Iowa, Texas Tech, Texas, and Gonzaga.
Fardaws Aimaq, the top center available in the NCAA transfer portal, tells ESPN he's narrowed his college options to five:— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) April 14, 2022
Testing the NBA draft waters as well. pic.twitter.com/wupG8CtwfU
Aimaq, at 6’11, 245 pounds, averaged 18.9 points, 13.6 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks per game last season. He owns career averages of 12.7 points and 11.1 rebounds per game, rather amazing considering he only averaged 14.9 minutes per game his freshman year at Mercer.
The Zags are hot in the transfer portal on virtually every player that enters their name. With Gonzaga’s 2022 recruiting class currently limited to one player, and the potential departures of players such as Chet Holmgren, Drew Timme, Andrew Nembhard, and Rasir Bolton, the Zags need to fill the roster holes via the portal.
Although Holmgren has not announced his NBA Draft intentions yet, all signs point to the unicorn big man playing just one year for the Zags, especially considering he is likely a top 5 (if not higher) pick in the upcoming draft.
Timme announced he is entering the NBA Draft process while hiring a NCAA approved agent, which does allow him to retain his eligibility. Reading between the lines, Timme’s “farewell Gonzaga post” didn’t include any mention of returning to school, something that is often in the wording of players who are testing the waters while considering a return to the NCAA.
Either way, regardless of whether Timme is in a Zag uniform next season or not, Aimaq would provide an immediate boost to the Gonzaga frontcourt and help make up defensively for the loss of Holmgren. Although Aimaq isn’t the blocking threat Holmgren is (and how is really), he is one of the top defensive rebounders in college. He also shot 43.5 percent from three point range last season (only taking 1.4 attempts per game).
Whether or not Aimaq comes to Gonzaga would largely seem to hinge on Timme’s intentions. Like Timme, Aimaq is a possession and shot percentage gobbler. Having both players in the post would be largely redundant at times. However, if Timme is not returning, a starting frontcourt of Aimaq and Anton Watson, with Kaden Perry, Ben Gregg, and Brandon Huff coming off the bench, is definitely top 10 team worthy.