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Penn State Hoops Transfer Portal Roundup: Mid-Season Check-In

We are halfway through the college basketball season, and it has been one wild ride so far.

Penn State has played very well since returning from a COVID-19 pause, winning three of its last four conference games. The Nittany Lions are coming off of a big home win against Rutgers and will travel to play No. 16 Ohio State next.

Elsewhere, former Penn State players are also having great seasons across the league. Three transfers are starters on top-25 teams, while a handful of others are contributing to programs trying to make a run in their respective conferences.

Here’s a quick look at how former Nittany Lions are faring across college basketball:

Izaiah Brockington, Iowa State

Brockington has had a career season for the No. 15-ranked Cyclones. He is averaging 17 points and 8.5 rebounds per game through 16 games and has scored more than 10 points in the last six contests, including a 20-point performance in a loss against Oklahoma.

Iowa State is practically a lock to make the NCAA Tournament, so Brockington will have his first opportunity to play in the Big Dance in his career. The Cyclones have been a Cinderella story since the season began, and he has played a big role in that.

Jamari Wheeler, Ohio State

While he hasn’t had a statistically great season, Wheeler’s impact on the Buckeyes has been easy to observe. He has been an important leader for No. 16 Ohio State and a big time facilitator as well. He is averaging 6.9 points, 4.4 assists, and 3.8 rebounds per game.

Wheeler’s best offensive game came in an overtime win over Nebraska when he scored a season-high 16 points while also bringing in seven rebounds. In the last game against Northwestern, he scored eight points and also had eight rebounds. When he returned to Happy Valley in December, he had nine points and eight assists.

The Buckeyes play Penn State again on Sunday, January 16, and Wheeler will surely be motivated to put up similar numbers against his former team.

Myreon Jones, Florida

It has been a down season for Jones, who is typically an electric scorer. Part of the reason is that he was out for a few weeks in late December, but even before that, he wasn’t scoring at the same rate that he was with Penn State.

Jones is averaging 9.9 points, along with 3.6 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game. In his first two games since returning to the Gators’ lineup, he scored 11 and 13 points, respectively. The Gators would lose those two games, however.

Rasir Bolton, Gonzaga

Gonzaga has a lot of contributors on its team, and they play together really well. It’s why it’s the No. 2 team in the country. Bolton has played a key role in the continued dominance of the Bulldogs throughout the season.

He is averaging 11 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 2.2 assists per game over the course of 14 games played. Most teams in the West Coast Conference needed to shut down due to COVID-19 protocols at some point this season, but when Gonzaga returned, Bolton put up 12 points in a win over Pepperdine. He should remain a key contributor as the Bulldogs prepare for more games in conference play.

Trent Buttrick, UMass

Despite a red-hot start to the season, Buttrick has gotten into a funk lately. While he still averages 11.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game over the course of the season, he has scored more than 10 points only two times in the last five games. It also doesn’t help that the Minutemen are currently on a three-game losing streak and are sitting with a 7-8 record.

Buttrick is still an active contributor to the team, though, as he’s leading the team in rebounds and blocks per game. He will just need to get more consistent if UMass wants to compete in conference play.

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About the Author

Owen Abbey

Owen Abbey is a junior from Annapolis, Maryland, majoring in Secondary Education and minoring in Social Justice in Education. When he is not writing for the blog, he enjoys rooting for the Baltimore Orioles and Ravens, supporting Penn State basketball and softball, dreaming of all of the ways he would win the tv show Survivor, and yes mom, actually doing schoolwork. If you would like to talk about sports or Survivor, the best way to reach out is on Twitter @theowenabbey. All other compliments may be sent to [email protected]

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