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HomeAfricaArizona star Oumar Ballo entering transfer portal after Wildcats’ NCAA tournament loss

Arizona star Oumar Ballo entering transfer portal after Wildcats’ NCAA tournament loss

Oumar Ballo’s time at Arizona is over.

The Wildcats star announced on Monday that he’s entering the transfer portal. The 7-footer is now among the top players up for grabs in the portal this offseason, and he’s arguably the best big man available.

“I am beyond grateful for my time at Arizona and for Wildcat Nation and the community of Tucson for embracing me into this family,” Ballo wrote, in part. “Tucson and all of the amazing people here will always hold a special place in my heart.

“With that being said, I have decided to enter the transfer portal as a graduate student for my final year of eligibility.”

Oumar Ballo, who averaged a double-double last season at Arizona, is now arguably the best big man available in the portal.

Oumar Ballo, who averaged a double-double last season at Arizona, is now arguably the best big man available in the portal. (Harry How/Getty Images) (Harry How via Getty Images)

Ballo was one of the best centers in the country this past season at Arizona. He averaged a double-double with 12.9 points and 10.1 rebounds per game while leading the Wildcats to the Sweet 16. Though Clemson beat Arizona to reach its first Elite Eight in four decades, Ballo had 15 points and 15 rebounds in that contest. He shot just shy of 66% from the floor this past season, too, and he had 20 double-doubles.

Ballo averaged 14.2 points and 8.6 rebounds per game in the 2022-23 season, his first as a starter at Arizona. Ballo, who is from Mali but went to high school in Spain, got his start at Gonzaga in 2019. He then transferred to Arizona when Tommy Lloyd, who was an assistant at Gonzaga, was hired as the Wildcats’ next head coach before the 2021-22 campaign.

Ballo is entering the portal as a graduate transfer and will have one season of eligibility left. It’s unclear where he will end up, but he will undoubtedly make a huge impact right away wherever that is.