Alabama guard Nimari Burnett has entered the transfer portal, BamaOnLine has confirmed, becoming the first Crimson Tide basketball player to transfer after the 2022-23 season.
Burnett joined the Alabama program two summers ago after transferring from Texas Tech. After missing the entire 2021-22 season due to a knee injury, he made his Crimson Tide debut this year, appearing in 25 games and starting the first eight. Burnett missed time due to a wrist injury and finished the season averaging 5.5 points in 14.7 minutes per game. He shot 35 percent from the field and 31.7 percent from three in his lone active season in Tuscaloosa.
After two years at UA, however, Burnett is transferring again. Unless he graduates this spring or summer, he would have to sit out a year due to NCAA guidelines for two-time transfers.
Well, the Tide is losing their first player to the portal after bowing out of the NCAA Tournament. Burnett saw his playing time diminish fairly significantly by the end of the season, so the move isn’t all too surprising. It does leave a hole in the depth, though.
But, where the Portal taketh, it also giveth back:
The Alabama men’s basketball team landed a player from the transfer portal Tuesday in the form of Jaykwon Walton, a wing from Wichita State who spent last season with the Shockers.
The Crimson Tide will be Walton’s fourth stop of his college career. His third school was Wichita State, where he spent the 2022-23 season and led the Shockers in scoring at 13.9 points per game. The 6-foot-7, 206-pound junior appeared in 28 games this past year and started 27 for the Shockers. He shot 53.5 percent from the field and 40.0 percent from three.
Walton has had an interesting career. He was a top-100 recruit out of Montgomery, but went to Georgia for his first season before pulling out and going to Shelton State community college.
After a stint there in Tuscaloosa, he went on to Wichita State last year and excelled as a scorer and 3-point sharp shooter as a 6’7” wing.
There’s plenty of portal shopping still to be done... Stay tuned.
Chris Braswell is a 6-3, 255-pound outside linebacker who has one roadblock out of the way in that All-America Will Anderson is on his way to being a high draft choice in the NFL. With the Crimson Tide in spring practice, that’s a chance.
Also making extra repetitions a spring possibility for Braswell is outside linebacker Dallas Turner being held out of drills after having undergone post-2022 season surgery.
“I feel like everyone is ready to step up, as well as me,” Braswell said Tuesday prior to Bama practice. “Will had a great impact for the school and the team. He was a very good leader. It’s time for me and the other guys to step into that role.”
Braswell definitely flashed a little last year, but with Will Anderson and Dallas Turner ahead of him, he didn’t get all that much playing time. Now, the former 5-star is entering his 4th year expecting to win a full-time starting job. It’s now or never for Braswell... And he’s added about 10 pounds to his frame to become an every-down player.
In February 2022, Alabama football defensive tackle Jaheim Oatis weighed 417 pounds.
That’s far above the playing weight the Crimson Tide wants its defensive tackles to be.
So, Alabama made clear he would have to lose weight. Fast forward a year, and Oatis was down to 316 pounds as of Feb. 25, 2022.
He said Tuesday he’s now at 320 pounds and wants to be at 330 pounds, but his transformation has been nothing short of remarkable since his arrival.
“It’s a lot better losing all this weight,” Oatis said. “I feel a lot better. Breathing good. Practicing better. When I had all that weight on me, it was a lot. Now that I’ve lost all it, I feel better.”
Speaking of guys gunning for full-time roles, Jaheim Oatis is shaping up to be a major player for the Tide as a sophomore. He was a bit of a surprise last year as a low 4-star recruit that was way overweight who came in and carved out a major rotational role even though the Tide had 3 senior starters on the defensive line.
Now, he’s trimmed up 25 more pounds from his freshman weight, and figures to be a a full starter and potential superstar player for Alabama next season.
NFL team owners approved a rule proposal on Tuesday that will make zero a legal jersey number for some players, and the first to announce the switch to the new digit was Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Calvin Ridley.
The former Alabama standout had worn No. 18 throughout his four NFL seasons.
Calvin Ridley will wear No. 0. #DUUUVAL pic.twitter.com/Recqc0Jgf9— Jacksonville Jaguars (@Jaguars) March 28, 2023
Hopefully, the team switch and year away from football will do Ridley some good, and he can team up with Trevor Lawrence to get back to being one of the top WRs in the NFL.