Oumar Ballo Feb 24, 2024; Tucson, Arizona, USA; Arizona Wildcats center Oumar Ballo (11) reacts after a basket against the Washington Huskies during the first half at McKale Center. Mandatory Credit: Zachary BonDurant-USA TODAY Sports

There have been many highly touted players that hit the transfer portal after the 2023-24 season concluded. But one transfer portal player in particular, who starred in his role last year at Arizona, made his long-awaiting transfer decision on Tuesday.

For the past two seasons, Arizona center Oumar Ballo has been a standout player at the collegiate level, making the All-Pac-12 first-team each of the last two years. This past season, he averaged 12.9 points and 10.1 rebounds while shooting nearly 66 percent from the field.

Ballo is widely regarded to be one of if not the best players in the transfer portal class. So naturally, there were plenty awaiting his decision on where he would be playing next season.

It was a bit of a surprising decision to most. According to ESPN’s Jeff Borzello, Ballo has decided to transfer to Indiana University to be coached by former NBA head coach Mike Woodson.

Indiana was of course once revered as a college basketball powerhouse for years under the late Bobby Knight. But as of late, they have been anything but, missing out on the NCAA Tournament this past season in the third year under Woodson.

One factor that may have gone into this decision is Indiana’s recent success with quality big men at the program. Former Indiana player turned Golden State Warriors big man Trayce Jackson-Davis recently parlayed a very successful career at the collegiate level into an NBA career.

Ballo will look to do the same next season, and he will have some help in doing so. He will be joining the program alongside former Washington State guard Myles Rice, who also decided to transfer to the program as ranked as the No. 17 player in this year’s transfer portal.

With these two players set to join the program, Indiana could certainly be a team to watch out of the Big Ten next season.

[Jeff Borzello]

About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.