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Kansas State nears full basketball roster by landing Kentucky transfer Ugonna Onyenso

Jerome Tang has made a big addition to the Kansas State basketball roster.

In more ways than one.

Ugonna Onyenso, a 7-foot forward who spent the past two seasons playing for Kentucky, announced his intentions to transfer to K-State on Tuesday while he was on a recruiting visit to Manhattan.

That is big news for the Wildcats for two reasons. First, he becomes the 12th scholarship player that has committed to play for K-State next season. Tang will have a complete roster with one more addition. Second, Onyenso is simply a big player who will bring both size and athleticism to the K-State frontcourt once he puts on a purple uniform.

Several other notable college basketball teams were recruiting Onyenso out of the transfer portal, including North Carolina, Mississippi State and Oregon. Winning a recruiting battle against that type of competition in June is always meaningful. The Wildcats landed one of the best available players on the market.

Onyenso only put up modest stats at Kentucky, as he averaged 3.6 points and 4.8 rebounds while playing in 24 games last season. But he did make 14 starts for the Wildcats and he was once a highly touted high school recruit. Perhaps a change of scenery will help him reach his full potential as he plays his final two years of college basketball.

The NBA Draft was an option for Onyenso, but he decided to return to college after testing the professional waters last month.

K-State will have a tall frontcourt next season. The Wildcats have also landed Arkansas transfer Baye Fall, who checks in at 6-foot-11.

It has been a busy offseason for Tang and the Wildcats. They lost 10 scholarship players from last year’s squad, leaving them with only David N’Guessan, Macaleab Rich and Taj Manning as returning players. Tang has since added seven incoming transfers. They are: Villanova guard Brendan Hausen, Michigan guard Dug McDaniel, Illinois-Chicago guard CJ Jones, Cal-State Fullerton guard Max Jones, Ikegwuruka, Samford forward Achor Achor, Fall and now Onyenso.

College basketball expert Evan Miya ranks K-State’s incoming transfer class among the top 25 in the nation.

They will complement K-State’s lone incoming high school recruit David Castillo.