Richard Pitino and the Minnesota Gophers basketball team have been named Stadium, as biggest transfer winners for 2020. Coming behind the Gophers were: Texas Tech, Richmond and Memphis (among others).
1) Minnesota – Richard Pitino and the Gophers added a couple of starters — as long as Liam Robbins (14.1 ppg, 7.1 rpg) and Both Gach wind up getting waivers from the NCAA to play this season (which should happen). The 7-foot Robbins, the nephew of Minnesota assistant Ed Conroy, is a major impact guy, as is Gach, who averaged 10.7 points last season for the Utah Utes. Gach should get the waiver because he transferred back closer to home.”Jeff Goodman – Stadium
This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who has paid attention to the transfer portal this spring (or MinnesotaSportsFan.com HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE). Pitino and Co. grabbed two of the hottest transfers on the market — Liam Robbins and Both Gach — this spring, and in the process, also nabbed former Western Michigan forward, Brandon Johnson.
Liam Robbins – Drake
Robbins averaged 14.1 points and 7.1 rebounds per game last year for Drake, was the first to commit this spring, doing so on April 5th. The soon-to-be-junior was recently ranked by CBS Sports, as the 8th best transfer on the market (excluding graduate-transfers), topping former Michigan guard David Dejulius and former Illinois guard Alan Griffin.
The same writer whose Transfer Portal success rankings triggered this blog Stadium, Jeff Goodman, ranked Robbins as the #1 (non-grad) transfer on the market, when he committed to the Gophers.
Robbins figures to bring a tall presence to a Gophers lineup that won’t have Daniel Oturu back next year. He can also shoot the ball pretty well, finishing his sophomore campaign with a .499 FG%. The 7-footer is the nephew of Associate Head Coach, Ed Conroy, and the cousin of walk-on senior, Hunt Conroy.
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanHoops) April 5, 2020
Went through tape on Minnesota's transfer commit Liam Robbins. As impressive as any transfer prospect in the country. Impressed with his touch, hands and post work. Effective over either shoulder. Late bloomer that didn't have a scholarship offer coming out of high school. pic.twitter.com/0r2AnRLqTc— Evan Daniels (@EvanDaniels) April 9, 2020
Both Gach – Utah
The other highly touted transfer (and Austin, MN native), committed to the Gophers a little over a week ago. The former Utah guard, who averaged 10.7 points and 3.6 rebounds per game last year, was ranked 16th in the same article mentioned before, by CBS Sports.
The Austin, Minnesota native has a similar game to Amir Coffey. He’s a 6-foot 7 guard who can not only attack and score in the lane, but also a player who can stroke it from deep.
I would love to give a huge Thank you to all the schools that took the time to recruit me but at this time I’m excited to commit to the University of Minnesota and join coach Pitino and his staff ….. Excited to be back home 〽️ 🙏🏿 pic.twitter.com/NeIeN2AtQB— Both Gach (@TutBoth) June 15, 2020
Both Gach @TutBoth has announced that he's transferring to @GopherMBB. The ex-Utah Ute averaged 11 ppg, 3.7 rpg, and 2.7 apg last season in the PAC 12.— Next Ones (@NXT1S) June 17, 2020
Watch his full 19-20 highlights: https://t.co/FzPofeaavC pic.twitter.com/DUFMblpxTC
Brandon Johnson – Western Michigan
The third transfer of the spring came from 2019-20 All-MAC Third Team award winner, Brandon Johnson. The graduate-transfer averaged 15.4 points and 8.1 rebounds per game last season and will most likely step into the starting lineup this coming season. Yesterday, Johnson was ranked 16th on ESPN’s immediately eligible transfer list.
On Super Hero Night at University Arena, Brandon Johnson turned into the Hulk 💪 🐝 @BHerbo_trey5 scored a career-high 29 points, including 19 in the second half, as he willed @WMUMBB to a monster win over Ball State on Saturday night.— Evan Stockton (@evstockton) February 9, 2020
Check out the highlights ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/CjUiJWegI9
Gach has a good case to get a waiver, since his family lives in Austin and he’s coming home to the University of Minnesota. On the other hand, Robbins’ decision could go either way. Richard Pitino, however, seems confident that both players will be granted the waivers.
In any case, Richard Pitino managed to get three quality transfers on the market this year, adding to what I said about the upcoming season he is about to have. If granted waiver requests, all three will most likely step into the starting lineup this coming season.
Great job, Richard!
Carson Ruen | Minnesota Sports Fan