Emma Marsing, [email protected]
LARAMIE, WYOMING — University of Wyoming Cowboys Basketball team is seeing quite a decline in the team as eight players have officially entered the NCAA transfer portal this past month. The Cowboys ended this season 9-22 overall.
Ethan Anderson, Max Agbonkpolo, and Jake Kyman entered the portal in early February. The Pac-12 Transfer trio was in their first year with the Cowboys. Anderson and Agbonkpolo, both juniors, transferred from USC, with Kyman, also a junior, coming from UCL.
Noah Reynolds a sophomore, averaged 14.5 points this season before suffering a third concussion in February causing him to sit on the sidelines for the final nine games of the season. Reynolds was known to be an offensive weapon and lead-scorer. Reynolds was also named Mountain West Player of the Week on December 12th, 2022.
Xavier DuSell a junior, averaged eight points a game this season and was the only player to play in all 31 games. DuSell was known for being a lockdown as a guard and was usually placed against the best guard on the other team.
Nate Barnhart a freshman, appeared in 20 games during this season. Against the Air Force Academy in early January, Barnhart was 5-for-5 netting 11 points.
Jeremiah Oden a junior, lead the cowboys in 30 games this season and averaged about 10 points a game. Oden hit his career high when he sank 28 points for the Cowboys during Senior Night against Nevada.
Graham Ike a junior, missed the line-up this season as he faced a right foot injury in October. In 2021-2022 Ike appeared in 33 games, averaging 19.5 points per game. Ike was named Mountain West Player of the Week last season and Mountain West Preseasons Player of the Year.
With Cowboy standouts Hunter Maldonado and Hunter Thompson exhausting their eligibility this season, Head Coach Jeff Linder now has 10 out of the 13 scholarships to fill.
Former signed Cowboy for the 2023-2024 season, Makaiah Williams, released his letter of intent to play in February.
As of today, Brendan Wenzel, Kenny Foster, and Caden Powell are the only remaining players on scholarships and are planning on returning to play next season.
Head Coach Jeff Linder released a statement today regarding the increase in players entering the portal stating, “I took over this program the week COVID shut down the country in March 2020 with four returning players and two years later we were dancing our way to the NCAA Tournament. New challenges (Transfer Portal & NIL) have presented themselves in the last twelve months that have changed the landscape of college basketball. The new landscape isn’t changing any time soon and we must embrace change. As we embrace change, I hope that the State of Wyoming and the passionate fans who wear the Brown and Gold will embrace the young men who will stay and RIDE FOR THE BRAND. There will be a lot of new faces next season across college basketball and there will be a lot of new faces playing for the Cowboys in the Arena-Auditorium. The returning players and the new faces will play with a passion and pride that will make you proud. My players know that one of the four things that they are held accountable to every day is what their response is. As a head coach, I have never experienced a season like this. I have learned a great deal over the last twelve months and will be better for it. My response will embrace the changes that have impacted the program without sacrificing the standards that have allowed my teams to be successful and what will make us successful as we move forward. As we move forward as a program, I want to wish all the best to the players who have chosen to transfer and are grateful for the time they spent here. Tough times don’t last, but tough people do. Go Pokes!!!”