Arizona basketball turnover tracker: Gorener transfers to San Jose State
Arizona Wildcats basketball hasn’t been lacking drama this offseason.
From the firing of Sean Miller amid NCAA allegations, to a swell of players leaving the team, to the hiring process of new coach Tommy Lloyd, the Wildcats will certainly look different on the court next year.
Let’s a look at the players from last year’s roster who have decided to depart or return.
Tibet Gorener – Transfer to San Jose State (May 17)
The freshman who played 30 full minutes last year will join former Arizona staffer David Miller under Tim Miles’ staff with the San Jose State Spartans, ESPN’s Jonathan Givony reported on Sunday.
Gorener, who is from Turkey, struggled to earn playing time and joined the Wildcats as a noted shooting specialist after playing at Orange Lutheran High School in California.
Jordan Brown – Transfer portal (May 3)
Brown has entered the transfer portal, according to Stadium’s Jeff Goodman.
The sophomore was the Pac-12 Sixth Man of the Year, averaging 9.4 points and 5.2 rebounds per game off the bench for the Wildcats last season.
Brown originally transferred to Arizona from Nevada after being a McDonald’s All American.
Arizona’s depth chart will see starting bigs Christian Koloko and Azuolas Tubelis back, as Koloko overtook Brown for a starting spot halfway through the season. Like Brown, both of those players have at least two years of eligibility left.
James Akinjo – Transfer to Baylor (April 23)
Akinjo’s first year with the Wildcats after transferring from Georgetown went as well as he could’ve hoped, but now he’s joining the reigning national champion Baylor Bears.
A week after entering the transfer portal, the point guard who led Arizona in scoring announced on his Instagram page he will join Scott Drew’s squad in Waco, Texas.
Akinjo averaged 15.6 points, 5.4 assists and shot 41% from three-point range as Arizona’s best player last season.
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Kerr Kriisa – Returning (April 21)
Freshman guard Kerr Kriisa told ESPN’s Jonathan Givony he is withdrawing from the transfer portal after putting his name in a week prior. Kriisa, whose three-point accuracy flashed, joined the team late in the regular season and in eight games averaged 5.5 points and 2.4 assists while making five starts.
Daniel Batcho – Transfer portal (April 12)
The 6-foot-11 freshman Daniel Batcho has also entered his name into the transfer portal. Out of France, Batcho suffered a knee injury during the preseason that required him to have surgery and was sidelined for the first half of year. As the season continued, the forward came down with an illness that caused him to be isolated from the team midseason. Batcho was cleared to come back in February for Arizona, however he never suited up in a game for the Wildcats.
Jemarl Baker – Transfer to Fresno State (April 12)
After two seasons as a Wildcat, guard Jemarl Baker announced he is transferring to Fresno State to finish out his college career. Baker is coming off a career season with Arizona, where he recorded 12.0 points per game, 2.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists. The team’s third-leading scorer, Baker was providing 34% shooting on 5.8 three-point attempts per game before suffering a season-ending wrist injury in January.
K.J. Simpson – Re-opens recruitment (April 8)
Combo guard K.J. Simpson announced he’s opened up his recruitment. A 2021 senior class member, the 6-foot-2 player from Chaminade College Preparatory in West Hills, Calif., was joined by commitments and fellow four-star guards Shane Nowell and Shane Dezonie in what was a top-25 class. Nowell and Dezonie remain committed at the moment.
Ira Lee – Transfer to George Washington (March 26)
The fifth-year senior posted on to his social media that he will transfer to George Washington for his last year of eligibility. The 6-foot-8 forward played in 113 games for the Wildcats while averaging 3.9 points and 3.0 rebounds.
Terrell Brown Jr. – Transfer to Washington (March 25)
The Seattle native announced that he was leaving Tucson after just one season and transferring to Washington. Brown spent his first two years of eligibility playing for the Seattle Redhawks, where he averaged 17.2 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.7 assists. In his sole year with the Wildcats, Brown appeared in 26 games, averaging 7.3 points and 3.5 rebounds. Brown was Arizona’s second-leading distributor, averaging 3.5 assists on the year.