Gonzaga basketball transfer Oumar Ballo follows Tommy Lloyd to Arizona

Apr 20, 2021, 8:11 AM

San Diego forward Yauhen Massalski, left, grabs a rebound next to Gonzaga center Oumar Ballo during...

San Diego forward Yauhen Massalski, left, grabs a rebound next to Gonzaga center Oumar Ballo during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Spokane, Wash., Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)

(AP Photo/Young Kwak)

Seven-foot Gonzaga transfer Oumar Ballo announced Monday that he will follow former Bulldogs assistant Tommy Lloyd to Arizona.

Ballo redshirted his freshman year and appeared in 24 games in 2020-21. He averaged 2.5 points, 1.5 rebounds and shot 63% in 6.3 minutes per game.

A four-star recruit and top-100 player in the 2019 class out of the NBA’s Latin America Academy, according to 247 Sports, Ballo is originally from Mali.

The 260-pound center announced his decision to head to Tucson on his Instagram account.

Where Ballo fits on the roster for Lloyd’s first year as head coach remains to be seen.

Centers Christian Koloko and Jordan Brown both return and as of now remain with the Wildcats as the team transitions to the post-Sean Miller era.

Arizona also appears in good shape at the other frontcourt spots with Azuolas Tubelis coming off a strong freshman campaign, plus wings Bennedict Mathurin and Dalen Terry currently on track to return next year.

The Wildcats have lost big men Ira Lee and Daniel Batcho to the transfer portal, though Lee hardly played his senior season and Batcho did not appear as a freshman due to injury and illness.

At guard, starting point man James Akinjo will test the NBA Draft waters but has left the door open to return.

Point guard Terrell Brown and combo Jemarl Baker have transferred to Washington and Fresno State, respectively, while freshman Kerr Kriisa is in the transfer portal. However, Kriisa told ESPN’s Johnathan Givony he’s open to returning to Arizona.


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