Utah State's Abel Porter Announces Transfer to Ohio State

By Colin Hass-Hill on April 11, 2020 at 2:08 pm
Abel Porter
Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

On Saturday, next season's roster rounded into what'll likely be its final form.

Abel Porter, who spent the past four years at Utah State, announced he plans to transfer to play his final season of college basketball at Ohio State. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound guard will be immediately eligible to play in the 2020-21 season.

The latest addition is the seventh roster move in less than a month. The Buckeyes landed Porter, Harvard's Seth Towns and Bucknell's Jimmy Sotos via transfer, Kaleb Wesson entered the 2020 NBA Draft, Alonzo Gaffney left the program and DJ Carton and Luther Muhammad put their names in the transfer portal. With Porter now in the mix, Ohio State has reached its 13-scholarship limit, and – barring something unexpected – its 2020-21 roster is now set.

Porter, who started 54 of 95 games while averaging 19.1 minutes per game over four years at Utah State, will provide Ohio State with backcourt depth behind CJ Walker and Duane Washington Jr. that became needed once Carton and Muhammad entered the transfer portal. 

The Porter File

  • Year: Redshirt Senior
  • Size: 6-foot-3, 200 pounds
  • Pos: Guard
  • School: Utah State
  • Stats: 5.6 points, 2.4 rebounds, 3.2 assists per game in 2019-20

As a redshirt junior last season, Porter started and averaged 5.6 points, 3.2 assists and 2.4 rebounds while shooting 38.2 percent from the field, 29.7 percent from 3-point range and 76.1 percent from the free-throw line in 25.6 minutes per game. The year before, while averaging 21.9 minutes per game as a part-time starter, he averaged 5.5 points, 2.8 assists and 2.3 rebounds while shooting 42 percent from the field, 40.5 percent from 3-point range and 71.2 percent from the foul line.

He's eligible for a fifth season due to an injury-shortened freshman season with the Aggies that lasted only four games.

Incredibly, Porter was a walk-on at Utah State until Jan. 24, 2019, when he and a teammate, Justin Bean, were awarded scholarships. Two days later, he hit a game-winning shot with 1.8 seconds remaining to beat New Mexico. Porter started every remaining game that season and all 34 games the next year before transferring to play his final year elsewhere.

Ohio State plans to use him as a backup to Walker and Washington, both of whom will play heavy minutes as starters at point guard and shooting guard. Porter's able to play both on and off the ball, having started at point guard last season. Not a high-powered scorer by any means, he's a facilitator who has put together two-to-one assist-to-turnover ratios each of the past two years.

As a Buckeye, Porter will immediately become the team's oldest player. Not only is he a fifth-year senior, he took a two-year LDS Church mission to Samara, Russia, from 2014 to 2016. He's also married, having tied the knot with his wife, Presley, in May 2019.

Porter, a Farmington, Utah, native, entered the transfer portal on March 13.

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