Arizona Transfer Oumar Ballo Commits to Indiana

Oumar Ballo has reportedly committed to Indiana. The Arizona transfer was the consensus top player in the portal and a two-time first team All-Pac-12 selection. He gives the Hoosiers their second commitment of portal season, joining fellow Pac-12 vet in Washington State’s Myles Rice.

With All-Big Ten center Kel’el Ware off to the NBA, Indiana was in search of a rim protector to join forward Malik Reneau in the frontcourt. Mike Woodson’s program found a good one.

Ballo began his career at Gonzaga but played sparingly as a freshman. He joined Tommy Lloyd in moving to Arizona, where he spent three seasons as a key contributor. Ballo was a starter the last two seasons, and during the 2023-24 campaign he averaged 12.9 points, 10.1 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 25.9 minutes per game. He shot 65.8% from the field but was woeful at the free throw line, only hitting 49.5% of his attempts.

Indiana is attempting to mold Reneau into more of a stretch four, which should open up the paint for Ballo. Listed at 7’0″ and 260 pounds, Indiana’s new addition will add to a starting lineup with a ton of size. Reneau is listed at 6’9″ and 233 pounds, while small forward Mackenzie Mgbako is 6’8″ and 217 pounds.

It has been a productive offseason for Indiana thus far. The Hoosiers have landed commitments from Rice, Ballo and McDonald’s All-American forward Bryson Tucker. And they don’t appear to be done yet, with multiple top transfers still making their way to Bloomington for visits.

Woodson is attempting to turn things around from a disappointing 2023-24 season, in which the Indiana fell well short of expectations going 19-14 and missing the NCAA tournament. Adding a player of Ballo’s stature will help that process tremendously.

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