According to ESPN’s Jeff Goodman, Oklahoma guard Darrion Strong-Moore intends to transfer. Strong-Moore averaged 3.8 points as a junior, and he’ll have one year of eligibility remaining wherever he winds up.
Oklahoma’s Darrion Strong Moore is transferring, source told ESPN. Junior guard with one year left.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) March 29, 2017
Although Strong-Moore definitely struck everyone (including myself) as a high-character guy, his absence next season is not going to harm OU in any way. In fact, this frees up a scholarship for the Sooners in 2017-18, which opens the door for a potential grad transfer to play in Norman next season. When considering this — along with the fact that Trae Young will be a Sooner — I think it’s fairly reasonable to assume that Darrion was advised to look for a better opportunity elsewhere.
Speaking of potential grad transfers, here are a couple of names that intrigue me at the moment:
Al Freeman, Baylor
Freeman, who averaged 9.7 points last season (and 11.3 during the previous season), is someone who could make an immediate impact at Oklahoma. The 6-3 guard actually started in 22 games for the Bears last season before serving a three-game suspension during Big 12 play.
That suspension could potentially raise a red flag for Oklahoma. Additionally, would Freeman want to play for a conference foe after leaving Baylor on amicable terms? Finally, he probably wants to be a starter wherever he goes. Would Kruger be willing to start Freeman over the young and talented Kameron McGusty? I highly doubt it. Otherwise, Kruger would have to elect to start a 6-3 guy at the 3 position over the 6-6 Rashard Odomes in order to make it happen, and I’m not sure he’d be willing to do that, either.
However, if each side could overcome those hurdles, Freeman would help make Oklahoma a major contender in the Big 12 next season.
Kerem Kanter, Green Bay
The younger brother of Enes Kanter recently declared for the NBA Draft but did not hire an agent. If he doesn’t get a favorable draft grade, he’ll be eligible to play immediately at a school of his choosing next season.
This would allow Kerem to be closer to his brother, so it seems like a natural fit. The 6-10 F/C averaged 11.3 points while only playing about 19 minutes per game last season, so he would provide the Sooners with another offensive weapon. Unfortunately, he takes after his brother on the defensive side of the ball, which is what explains his limited minutes.
We’ll mention some other names in the future as things start to develop. We may also seem some additional attrition, so we’ll keep y’all up to speed on that as well.
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