Just like that, Tennessee now has four open scholarships to fill this offseason. Former five-star power forward Brandon Huntley-Hatfield is the latest player to test the transfer portal, coming off of his first season with the Volunteers.
Huntley-Hatfield struggled to find the floor with consistency as a true freshman after reclassifying to join Tennessee last fall. The 6-10 power forward averaged just 3.9 points per game and three rebounds, and really didn’t find playing time until Olivier Nkamhoua was lost for the season due to injury.
Following that injury, Huntley-Hatfield became a starter, getting 15-20 minutes per game to end the season. With John Fulkerson on the way out, Huntley-Hatfield was set to return to a similar same role next season.
The transfer rumors surrounding Huntley-Hatfield were pretty loud midseason, but that noise died down after he found a consistent role. Today, he’s opted to look elsewhere.
Rick Barnes hinted that we could see more roster movement, but it didn’t seem like he was speaking of Huntley-Hatfield last week.
“We need Brandon, Jonas, Uros,” Barnes said on Thursday, “Oliver getting back, Josiah, Jahmai and everyone else. There isn’t one of them that we don’t need to continue to get better.”
Just one year removed from being a top prospect, Huntley-Hatfield should have plenty of suitors. Auburn, Baylor, Georgetown, Georgia, Howard, Kansas, Kentucky, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, and Wake Forest were his top 11 before he ultimately decided on Tennessee.
Tennessee has already lost Victor Bailey Jr. to George Mason and Quentin Diboundje to East Carolina. Kennedy Chandler is off to the NBA, while Handje Tamba also searches for opportunities in the portal. With just one player in the 2022 class, that now leaves four spots open.
The Volunteers have been in contact with several guards in the portal, and now likely will look to add a big man as well. Tennessee will bring back Olivier Nkamhoua, Jonas Aidoo and Uros Plavsic. At least one more body will be needed there for depth alone.