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Utah Valley transfer Fardaws Aimaq lists Gonzaga in top five college options

Utah Valley transfer Fardaws Aimaq, one of the top post players in the portal, has Gonzaga among his final five college destinations.

Aimaq who averaged 18.9 points and 13.6 rebounds last season, has trimmed his list to GU, Washington, Iowa, Texas and Texas Tech, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. Aimaq also is reportedly testing the NBA waters for the second straight year.

The 6-foot-11, 245-pounder has dominated in the Western Athletic Conference the last two seasons after playing his freshman year at Mercer. He posted 27 double-doubles in 32 games last season. He’s been the WAC defensive player of the year and first-team All-WCC each of the last two seasons.

He was the 2021 WAC player of the year while averaging 13.9 points and 15.0 rebounds, the latter tops in the country.

Aimaq is No. 9 in CBS Sports’ rankings of top transfers and No. 10 by ESPN.

The Zags are expected to lose freshman forward Chet Holmgren, who is projected among the top three picks in the NBA Draft, and could be without forward Drew Timme, who declared for the draft last week while maintaining an option of returning next season.

Gonzaga has been linked to numerous guards and bigs in the transfer portal, but Aimaq is one of the few players from the Pacific time zone. He’s a native of Vancouver, British Columbia.

Aimaq attempted just two 3-pointers and made both in his first two collegiate seasons. The big man hit 20 of 46 from distance last season (43.5%) and improved his free-throw shooting to 72.3% from 61.8% in 2021. He attempted 195 free throws, 33rd nationally.

Morehead State forward Johni Broome has Gonzaga in his final eight. He’s also considering Duke, Louisville, Florida, Houston, Auburn, Memphis and Kentucky.

The 6-10, 235-pound Broome, No. 3 in ESPN’s transfer rankings, averaged 16.8 points, 10.5 rebounds and 3.9 blocks (third nationally) last season. He’s a two-time All-Ohio Valley Conference first-team selection with three years of eligibility remaining.

South Carolina’s Jermaine Couisnard has narrowed his list to Gonzaga, DePaul, Houston, Ohio State, Oregon, Maryland and Massachusetts, reported. The 6-foot-4, 210-pound guard has averaged double figures in each of the last three seasons while starting 46 of 73 career games.

Couisnard led the Gamecocks in scoring (12.0) and assists (3.2) per game last year. The Chicago native scored 33 points against LSU but also had 12 single-digit games, including six straight. He’s a career 37.1% field-goal shooter, including 30.2% behind the 3-point line.

Louisiana Tech transfer forward Kenneth Lofton, Charlotte transfer guard Jahmir Young and SMU transfer guard Kendric Davis have heard from Gonzaga and numerous other programs, according to media outlets.

All three are expected to go through the draft process.

Davis, No. 1 in CBS Sports’ transfer rankings, averaged 19.4 points to earn American Athletic Conference player of the year honors. Young boasts career averages of 16.7 points, 35% accuracy on 3-pointers, 5.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists in three seasons at Charlotte. Lofton, who played with Holmgren on the U.S. U19 team last summer, averaged 16.5 points and 10.5 boards last season.