Busting Brackets

Big Ten Basketball: 10 most under-the-radar transfers for 2024-25 season

The Big Ten will have plenty of incoming transfers, many of whom are going unnoticed.
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With the transfer portal closed for over a week, teams across the Big Ten are meticulously inching closer to fielding their 2024-24 rosters. Although there are still minor holes to fill, such as a backup big or a need to bolster backcourt depth, most Big Ten teams are looking at one or two more final additions before summer workouts begin. 

Amidst the transfer portal frenzy, the Big Ten landed some big-time names in the portal, such as Vlad Goldin to Michigan, Oumar Ballo to Indiana, Kobe Johnson to UCLA, Kylan Boswell to Illinois and Meechie Johnson to Ohio State. 

Although all of those additions will surely bring a dynamic impact to their respective programs, there are plenty of other portal additions in the Big Ten worthy of offseason recognition. Take a look at 10 of the Big Ten’s most under-the-radar transfers for the 2024-25 season.

Carey Booth, Illinois

In his freshman season at Notre Dame, the 6 '10 power forward/center averaged 6.4 PPG and 4.3 RPG, starting in 19 of Notre Dame’s final 22 games. Don’t let the stats fool you. Booth, the son of former NBA journeyman and current general manager of the Denver Nuggets, Calvin Booth, brings an elite NBA-like physical skillset with his long frame and athleticism.

Despite his longer frame, Booth can both run the floor and stretch the floor, making him a seamless fit into what Underwood has been looking for in his transfer portal class: positional size and ability to shoot from deep. Although Booth may not have been the strongest shooter from three-point range, shooting a hair under 30%, expect those numbers to increase in Underwood’s system.

Jalen Leach, Northwestern

Chris Collins found quite the quality portal addition last offseason, landing Ryan Langborg from Princeton, and might have done the same with Jalen Leach, a transfer from Fairfield. Leach, who earned All-MAAC honors in 2023-24, averaged 16.2 PPG, 4.1 RPG, and 3.0 APG, helping lead the Stags to an impressive 24-win campaign considering their interim head coach, Chris Casey, took over in mid-October (his interim tag is now removed.)

In a high-volume role offensively, Leach nearly 49% from the field and 35% from three. A well-rounded guard who can get in for a rebound and sift passes through holes in the defense, Leach will play an instrumental role for the Wildcats in 2024-25 with the departure of Boo Buie.