Arsalan Kazemi completed the Rice gutting. Not only was he the sixth player to leave, but he was the leading scorer and rebounder.
But what's bad for one team is inevitably good for another. Yesterday we found out who the other is – it's the Oregon Ducks.
Attracting a player who led their team in scoring in rebounding is obviously a big deal. But – as we've seen with countless transfers earlier this year – most of these players average a lot of points strictly through volume. Few are actually efficient basketball players.
But what about Arsalan Kazemi?
In this case, Kazemi does not fit the mold of the typical transfer. He's solid. He made 60% of his twos, and was better at getting to the line than all but seven players in the nation. The only real knock against him is that he's only an average free throw shooter (68%). On the defensive end he was second in Conference USA in steal%, and 16th in block%. And he was third nationally in defensive rebounding. He's undersized at 6-7, but he makes up for it with tremendous skill.
He fits right in at Oregon, because the Ducks just graduated Olu Ashaolu, who was essentially a poor man's version of Kazemi.
But will Kazemi be cleared to play? That's the real question. I doubt it – why allow someone to play immediately who is simply wanting to transfer up – but the NCAA has made some strange rulings this year. If so, it instantly makes Oregon a contender in the Pac-12.