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Identifying Louisville's Potential Transfer Portal Guard Targets

These are some of the top remaining uncommitted guards in the transfer portal.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Since taking over as the head coach of the Louisville men's basketball program in mid-March, Kenny Payne has done a solid job with roster construction ahead of his first year at the helm.

He got six players to return for next season, including standouts Sydney Curry and El Ellis, got longtime commit Kamari Lands to sign his NLI, landed another Class of 2022 prospect in Devin Ree, and also added Brandon Huntley-Hatfield through the transfer portal.

While the Cardinals are already brimming with potential with the crop of players currently in the fold, there is still a very glaring need remaining: the back court.

Mason Faulkner and Jarrod West graduated, and Noah Locke opted to transfer to Providence. As a result, Ellis is currently the only true guard on the roster. Mike James can slide over and play the two when he has to, but even still, Louisville is in a dire need for guards.

Conceivably, out of the four remaining open scholarships for the 2022-23 roster, at a minimum, two of them need to go to guards. Almost every high-caliber high school guard prospect is committed, so Louisville will have to fill these needs through the transfer portal.

So who are some of the top uncommitted guards currently still in the portal? Below are eight likely options for Louisville, ranked alphabetically by last name:

Teddy Allen

Previous School: New Mexico State
Measurables: 6-foot-6, 223 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Sixth Year Graduate Transfer

Summary: Allen has had an incredibly winding collegiate basketball career, starting out at West Virginia, sitting a year at Wichita State, transferring to Western Nebraska C.C., then to Nebraska and then this previous year at New Mexico State. He was named the 2022 WAC Player of the Year, putting up 19.6 points, 6.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game while shooting 43.8 percent from the field and 33.5 percent on threes. He also had a major role in the Aggies' 70-63 upset over UConn in the NCAA Tournament, scoring 37 points.

A.J. Green

Previous School: Northern Iowa
Measurables: 6-foot-4, 189 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Graduate Transfer

Summary: Green was an impact guy for Northern Iowa from the moment he stepped on campus, compiling 1,769 points in 99 career games, all of which were starts. He's a three-time All-MVC player and two-time MVC Player of the year, including this past year where he averaged 18.8 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game while also shooting 41.0 percent from the field and 38.8 percent from long range.

Tyrese Hunter

Previous School: Iowa State
Measurables: 6-foot, 178 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Sophomore

Summary: Hunter was one of the biggest contributors to the Iowa State's impressive turnaround, going from 2-22 the year before to 22-13 with a Sweet 16 appearance. Starting all 35 games for the Cyclones, he averaged 11.0 points, 4.9 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game. While he only shot 39.1 percent overall and 27.4 percent on threes, he was still named the Big 12 Freshman of the Year.

Isiaih Mosely

Previous School: Missouri State
Measurables: 6-foot-5, 201 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Senior

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Summary: Mosely might be one of the top scorers that's still available in the transfer portal. After a solid freshman year, he had a two-year run with Missouri State where he was one of the best mid-major scorers in college basketball. He was named a First-Team All-MVC selection as both a sophomore and junior, including the past year where he averaged 20.4 points per game on 50.4 shooting, 42.7 percent on threes and 90.2 percent at the free throw line. He also put up 6.2 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game

Xavier Pinson

Previous School: LSU
Measurables: 6-foot-2, 170 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Graduate Transfer

Summary: Between his three years at Missouri and a brief stint at LSU, Pinson has been an impact player for most of his collegiate career and has plenty of experience in the Power Five with his 116 games played and 76 starts. He averaged 13.6 points and 2.9 assists per game in his final year at Mizzou, and 9.8 points and 4.8 assists per game during his lone year at Baton Rouge.

Courtney Ramey

Previous School: Texas
Measurables: 6-foot-3, 185 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Graduate Transfer

Summary: A former Chris Mack recruit, it could be possible that things come full circle and he winds up at Louisville. Ramey played in a whopping 128 games with 106 starts at Texas, and he was a significant contributor his entire career, totaling 1,275 points, 444 rebounds and 358 assists. His best season came as junior when he averaged 12.2 points and 3.9 assists per game, and was named Third-Team All-Big 12. He put up 9.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game last season, while also shooting 39.7 percent from the field and 35.0 percent on threes.

Grant Sherfield

Previous School: Nevada
Measurables: 6-foot-2, 189 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Senior

Summary: After a year with Wichita State, Sherfield had a two-year run where he was the best player on Nevada's roster. He was named a First-Team All-Mountain West selection as a sophomore, then to the Third-Team this past year when he averaged 19.1 points, 6.4 assists anf 4.2 rebounds per game on 43.5 percent shooting and 33.3 percent from long range

Malachi Smith

Previous School: Chattanooga
Measurables: 6-foot-4, 205 pounds
2022-23 Academic Year: Redshirt Senior

Summary: Smith started out at Wright State, then after a year there and sitting out his first season at Chattanooga, he exploded. As a redshirt sophomore in 2020-21, he put up 16.8 points and 8.8 rebounds per game to be named First-Team All-SoCon. Last season, he took another step forward, averaging 19.9 points, 6.7 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game while shooting 49.3 percent from the field and 40.7 on three point attempts. He was named the 2021-22 SoCon Player of the Year.

(Photo of Malachi Smith: Geoff Burke - USA TODAY Sports)

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