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Part 3 Of ?? In Our Marquette In The Portal Series

The Golden Eagles continue to explore new transfer options for next season.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: JAN 08 Notre Dame at NC State
Will Manny Bates be wearing blue and gold this fall?
Photo by William Howard/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

We’ve already done two articles on guys in the transfer portal that the Marquette men’s basketball coaching staff has been in contact with so far. If you haven’t seen those yet, they are here and here. Please enjoy at your leisure.

There are, of course, more names to consider, and that’s why we have reconvened again. Hilariously, two more names got added to this list after I had already opened the document to start putting this together. I presume there will be a fourth article in the future, because that’s just how these things go.

But first, an update on some guys that we already talked about, with one good piece of news amongst three updates.

Noah Carter — In the Final Five

Jaylan Gainey — Florida State

Taylor Funk — Utah State

Before we go further, I want to drop in Ye Olde Scholarshipe Charte:

As you can see, we know that Marquette has one scholarship spot available for the 2022-23 season. That could balloon up to two spots if Justin Lewis elects to pursue a pro career, but as things stand right this second, he hasn’t announced that he’s even testing the waters and getting evaluations yet. It’s also worth noting that MU does not have an projected seniors on the roster for the fall, so whatever spaces end up as available will be the same number of spaces available in 2023-24 as well.

Onwards to new names to watch!

Patrick Cartier

Hillsdale College lists Cartier on their roster at 6’8” and 220 pounds. His 22 points per game were the best on the team by a long stretch as he was the only guy in double digits, and his 6.1 rebounds per game ended up as second best on the squad. He also averaged 2.4 assists per game in 2021-22 as the Chargers went 23-8 before falling in the Elite Eight of the Division 2 national championship tournament.

The Brookfield East graduate has played three seasons at Hillsdale, but one of those was the 2020-21 campaign that goes in the books as the free eligibility season. He definitely has one season of eligibility to use, and Cartier would have that COVID bonus season to use if he wanted to do so.

Cartier has been remarkably consistent in his three seasons at Hillsdale. 16.1/6.1/1.2 as a redshirt freshman, then 20.5/6.2/1.8, and then the 22/6/2 this past season. His shooting has been pretty even across the board, going from 64.3 to 65.1 to 66.0 this season, and slowing moving his attempts per game up each season as well. He’s also been a consistent three-point shooter, hitting at least 42% of his attempts in each season, but he’s never even touched two attempts per game even at that conversion rate.

I don’t think it’s a jump to think that a Division 2 All-American can contribute at the Division 1 level. I think it’s reasonable to wonder if he’s still going to be able to be a 22/6/2 guy, but I also don’t think that Shaka Smart would be asking Cartier to do that, either. Score when you can, grab all the rebounds, step out and hit some threes? Seems reasonable and a definite positive addition to the MU roster.

Manny Bates

The first thing that we have to say here is that Bates essentially did not play at all in 2021-22, as he suffered a season ending shoulder injury after playing a minute against Bucknell in NC State’s opener.

The second thing that we have to say here is that the 6’11”, 230 pound Bates came into college just barely outside the top 100 according to 247 Sports, and was a more than competent option in the middle for the Wolfpack in the two seasons that he played. He started in 49 of 53 appearances and averaged 7.2 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks in just over 22 minutes an outing. Bates was a particularly adept offensive rebounder, ranking in the top 250 in the country in OR rate per KenPom.com in both of his two years of action. That probably has a lot to do with why Bates is a career 65% shooter on two-point attempts.

Wait, why am I putting effort in here? Paint Touches and The Athletic already did it for me.

I’m not 100% sure about Bates’ eligibility status. He is graduating from NC State this spring as this was his fourth season there after redshirting in 2019 due to an injury. If you think of 2022 as his free season of eligibility due to COVID, then I think he would still have two seasons available to him.... but how many years does a guy want to be in college when he’s already been there for four seasons?

Warren Washington

Look, I’m just going to tell you now that if he picks Marquette and does what the Golden Eagles need him to do to at a high level, I’m nicknaming him The Archangel.

Standing 7 feet tall and listed at 225 pounds this past season by Nevada, it would seem that Washington fits right in with what the Marquette roster needs the most right now. After starting out his college career as a mostly unheralded prospect at Oregon State and playing a bit role for the Beavers, he transferred to Nevada. He then transferred to Nevada and following his redshirt year in 2019-20, Washington was an almost every game starter for head coach Steve Alford. 46 starts in 48 appearances the last two years, where he averaged 10.2 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. His numbers were mostly the same in the 2021 and 2022 seasons, but he doubled his blocks per game in Year Two even though he was only playing about two more minutes per night on average.

The advanced stats match up to the raw numbers you’re seeing there. Washington was top 250 in rebounding rate in both of the past two years, including coming in at #104 in offensive rebounding rate this past year. He was also a top 300 shot blocker in terms of rate, including top 100 at 6.3% this past season. He’s also an incredibly effective scorer around the rim, shooting .589 overall on two-point attempts, maxing out at .608 in 2021-22.

It’s reasonable to wonder how much of a workload that Washington can take on, as he played in just 54.8% of Nevada’s minutes in 2021, and only cracked past 30 minutes once for the Wolf Pack in the 2022 campaign. He also had a stretch of eight games that he missed this past season, but that was due to a fractured finger and some dislocations. That shouldn’t be anything that bothers him once November 2022 rolls around.

Washington will have one season of eligibility available to him for sure, as well as a COVID bonus season if he would be interested in that.

Zach Wrightsil

Yep, Shaka Smart is shaking the branches all the way down to the NAIA ranks. Wrightsil is listed as a 6’7”, 205 pound forward out of Texas. He’s been one of the Wolf Pack’s most important players ever since arriving in New Orleans, and he capped his time there in a very memorable way. Not only did he lead the team in scoring at 18.7 points per game while adding 8.8 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 2.2 steals, but Loyola also won the NAIA national championship.

That came by way of a 75-70 overtime win against Lewis-Clark State College back on March 20th. Wrightsil was great in that one, going for a game high 27 points, getting a double-double thanks to 10 rebounds, and added two steals and an assist. This came after being named to the all-tournament team a year ago when he averaged 23.6 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 4.3 assists in knockout play.

I am curious about what Shaka Smart and his staff particularly see in Wrightsil for the MU roster. He won’t be playing center for the Golden Eagles, not with Oso Ighodaro and Keeyan Itejere on the roster. With that said, Wrightsil is not a three-point shooter at all in the slightest. He went just 4-for-27 (14.8%) from long range this past season. Nothing in his Loyola bio makes note of his long range shooting, so that feels like a pretty solid example of what exactly he’s capable of from outside. There’s nothing wrong with not being able to shoot the three..... but Smart has said in the past that his guys are going to need to be able to do that.

Wrightsil played for four years at Loyola, so it seems safe to say that he will be only available for one more season.

Ali Ali

Ali is a 6’8”, 196 pound wing from Kendallville, Indiana. He started off his time at Akron as a starter for the Zips, but by the end of the season, he was relegated to the bench and minimal minutes. Since then, Ali has been starting pretty much every night for head coach John Groce. This past season, he exploded to the forefront of the roster, leading the team in scoring at 13.9 points a night.

He did that mostly by scoring inside, converting twos at a 49% clip, but Ali was efficient from outside this year as well. He attempted 3.5 long range shots per game and knocked in 41% of them.

I don’t want to say that he’s only a scorer, but that’s definitely the role that the Zips had him in this past year. Ali’s rebounding numbers took a bit of a knock, going from 3.4 to just 2.9 per game in 2021-22. The rate numbers on KenPom.com line up with that kind of a drop. Let’s call it he can rebound his position well, if said position is wing. While Ali might be 6’8”, he’s probably never going to turn into a dominant force inside if he’s in the ballpark of 200 pounds.

Wherever he does end up, Ali will be on what we would normally call his senior year of eligibility, but he does have that COVID bonus season floating around in his back pocket if that’s something he wants to do.