It has been an eventful offseason for the Washington State basketball team and while the dust has mostly settled, Kyle Smith and the coaching staff are still busy working to fill their final open scholarship. Oregon’s loss might just end up being WSU’s gain as 4-star prospect Dior Johnson has WSU in his top 3 just days after he de-committed from Oregon.
Johnson is a huge name in the recruiting world, having been on the elite prospect scene for several years. The 6-foot-3 point guard is currently the No. 37 prospect in the 2022 recruiting class by the 247 Sports composite ranking. Johnson, however, was ranked as high as No. 5 in the class in 2020. A year ago, in June 2021, he was the No. 7 prospect in the class and a five-star recruit.
Johnson’s high school career has been one of change. He initially committed to Syracuse in 2020 before opening things up. A year ago he committed to Oregon and signed with the Ducks in November. That only changed a week ago when he opened things up. Johnson played for 9 different high schools during his career.
That many high schools could make eligibility an interesting adventure. That could make the G-League or another pro league a likely option, but it sounds like Johnson is wanting to play college ball.
Dior Johnson, ESPN's No. 35 prospect in 2022, will decommit from Oregon and explore other college options, a source told ESPN. Oregon signed two veteran power-5 guards from the NCAA transfer portal and return starting PG Will Richardson, who entered the NBA draft. pic.twitter.com/kei5aW8Hqf— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) June 9, 2022
Johnson is visiting Mississippi State first, starting on Tuesday. No reports yet on when or if he will take a visit to Pullman. It is somewhat rare for a prospect at the level of Johnson to be available this late in the recruiting cycle. That could bode well for the Cougars as Johnson is looking for an opportunity to play significant minutes and those roles are largely filled around the country.
Should Johnson find his way to Pullman, the Cougs would be added a talented scorer, capable of getting to the rim and making tough shots. He would in theory see significant minutes at the point, combining with Myles Rice, Justin Powell, TJ Bamba and Jabe Mullins in the backcourt rotation.
With rosters filling up quickly, it seems reasonable to expect Johnson to make a decision sooner rather than later.
USC basketball shows signs of largely standing pat for 2023
USC basketball has not landed a big name from the transfer portal, while other Pac-12 schools have loaded up.
Track & Field:
WSU, Zags reach All-American status at NCAA Championships | Columbia Basin Herald
Athletes from both Washington State and Gonzaga participated in the NCAA Track and Field Championships, with athletes from both schools reaching All-American status.
2023 NFL Mock Draft: Ohio State, Alabama dominate first round, per Pro Football Network
One of the fastest-rising prospects from the transfer portal this spring, Ward has ideal size at 6-foot-3, 220 pounds with a Howitzer for an arm. Ward will rejoin his former coach — Incarnate Word's Eric Morris — at Washington State this season. Morris was named the Cougars’ offensive coordinator shortly after Incarnate Word’s season came to an end. Ward said his familiarity and relationship with Morris played a big role in his decision to pick the Cougars.