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Wisconsin basketball recruiting: potential transfer portal targets?

A trio of players with Wisconsin connections have entered the transfer portal this week.

NCAA Basketball: Wofford at North Carolina Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports

The Wisconsin Badgers men’s basketball are poised to lose a ton of talent before next season. They have a senior-laden rotation and while one or two players may return (due to the NCAA granting a free year of eligibility to everyone) there will be holes to fill in the lineup.

Greg Gard and co. would be wise to take a look in the transfer portal for some veteran leadership and scoring. As luck would have, a trio of players entered the portal on Monday that should, at a minimum, pique Wisconsin’s interest. Let’s take a look!

  • Star Wofford guard Storm Murphy (Middleton) has entered the transfer portal and will most likely receive a bunch of interest from around the country. The 6-foot floor general averaged 17.8 ppg, 4.3 apg and 3.3 rpg this past season while being named first team All-Southern Conference. His scoring average led the team and was fourth in the conference. He shot 40.4% from three and played 87.8% of his team’s minutes and recording excellent advanced shooting numbers.

Murphy would have one year of eligibility remaining and would probably slide right into Wisconsin’s starting lineup if he ended up back home in Madison. It will be interesting to see if Greg Gard reaches out because I’d imagine Murphy will end up at Power 6 school when all is said and done.

  • Star George Washington forward Jamison Battle (Robbinsdale, Minn.) has also entered the transfer portal according to this Twitter account. Battle, who attended DeLaSalle High School in Minneapolis, played AAU ball for D1 Minnesota with current Badgers forward Tyler Wahl. Gard has a great connection with D1 Minnesota too as other current players like Nate Reuvers, Ben Carlson, Steven Crowl and Walt McGrory played for them. In fact, a young Wahl is in Battle’s Twitter banner picture.

Battle has already heard from Marquette, Nebraska, Arizona, Cincinnati, Loyola Chicago, Arkansas and Tennessee according to ESPN’s Jeff Borzello.

The 6-foot-7 forward averaged 17.3 points and 5.2 rebounds for the Colonials this season in the Atlantic 10. He was named to the A-10 all-rookie team last year and his production kicked up a notch this season. He shot 35.4% from deep but is a good free throw shooter too, so he could potentially improve his long range stroke in his remaining two years of college.

  • 6-foot-5 wing Marlon Ruffin (Madison) has played the last two seasons at Nebraska-Omaha, winning Summit League Sixth Man of the Year last season, but has entered his name into the transfer portal. Per the Sun Prairie Star: “Ruffin led Sun Prairie High School to its first-ever WIAA Division 1 state tournament during the 2017-18 season and that same year was named the Big Eight Conference Player of the Year. He scored 1,069 points which ranks sixth all-time in SPHS boys basketball history.”

According to Mark Your Moment Basketball Showcase on Twitter, Ruffin has already heard from Butler, Rice, Loyola, Cal State Fullerton, Montana State, Wright State, Austin Peay, Stetson, Bryant, Northern Kentucky, & Towson since he entered his name in the transfer portal. Ruffin averaged 13.1 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game this season for UNO. He shot 38.3% from three this season as well and is shooting 37.7% for his career. He has two years left to play.

To be perfectly honest, I’m not sure if Ruffin is a Big Ten caliber player and I doubt that the Badgers will take a long look at him.