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Wisconsin men’s basketball recruiting: any big men in the transfer portal?

The Badgers have been linked to a few guards recently. What about the taller folks?

NCAA Basketball: Nebraska at Penn State Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports

Over the past few days we’ve highlighted a couple of guards that the Wisconsin Badgers men’s basketball team have been taking a look at in the transfer portal. Now let’s shift our focus to the big men and see if there are any players out there who could help replace Nate Reuvers and Micah Potter.

First up, there is former BYU big man Wyatt Lowell. Lowell, who stands at 6-foot-10 and weighs 205 pounds, started his career at Utah Valley University where he was named the WAC Freshman of the Year for the 2018-19 season. He then transferred to BYU, when the UVU coach was hired by the Cougars, where he sat out a year and then this most recent year he suffered a pair of injuries that limited him to only six games.

Per our SBN cousins at BYU site Vanquish The Foe: “He had shoulder surgery before the season started and tore his Achilles in January at Gonzaga.”

Lowell does not appear to be a much of a presence on the defensive end but what he does do is get up shots from beyond the arc. His freshman year he shot 38.2% from deep (39-of-102) and he seemed to shoot better against better competition. Against Tier A and B teams on KenPom, Lowell shot 51.5% from three (17-of-33). For reference, Potter was 39-of-101 from three this past season.

I’m really intrigued by his shooting ability, but he doesn’t look like a great rebounder and also appears to turn the ball over too much for a big guy while also not getting to the free throw line enough. As a freshman at UVU he played in 39.8% of the team’s minutes on the season and shot 10 free throws total.

On a personal note, the sophomore from Gilbert, Ariz., went on a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Minnesota so he is at least somewhat familiar with this region of the country.

Another big man that Wisconsin fans are probably more familiar with is Penn State’s John Harrar. The 6-foot-9 and 240 pound forward entered the transfer portal back on March 16, along with a whole host of his teammates, and has heard from many schools since then.

While I can’t find any official mention of Wisconsin’s interest in Harrar it would be kind of silly for them not to at least kick the tires, as they say. The Wallingford, Pa. native was honorable mention all-Big Ten this past year and would be eligible immediately as a grad transfer.

Harrar started 25 games for the Nittany Lions last year and averaged 8.8 ppg and 8.8 rpg while also chipping in 1.3 apg, which isn’t half bad for a guy who spends most of his time in the post. He had the ninth best offensive rebound rate of anyone in the country, according to KenPom, and the fourth best free throw rate. Hell, he had a season high 11 free throw attempts against the Badgers at the end of January.

He is exactly the type of bruising big man that the Badgers could use to teach Ben Carlson, Steven Crowl and Chris Hodges how to bang bodies in the Big Ten. We will keep you updated with the twists and turns of the transfer portal as new news comes out.