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WSU Men's Basketball

Tyrell Roberts transfers out of Washington State, signs with San Francisco

Washington State guard Tyrell Roberts controls the ball against Oregon State on March 3 at Beasley Coliseum in Pullman. Roberts, who entered the transfer portal last month, signed Tuesday with the University of San Francisco.  (Associated Press)
By Colton Clark The Spokesman-Review

Coach Kyle Smith made a stop at the University of San Francisco before moving on to Washington State.

Guard Tyrell Roberts did the opposite.

Roberts, who entered the transfer portal in late April after one season at WSU, signed Wednesday with USF – the program Smith led from 2016-19.

Roberts’ departure comes as a surprise, considering he had been plucked out of the Division II ranks by Smith last offseason and plugged into the starting lineup of an ever-improving power-conference team.

The 5-foot-11 Sacramento native started 31 games at shooting guard for the Cougars in 2021-22 following a two-season stint at UC San Diego, where he earned D-II All-America honors.

Roberts finished his lone season at WSU as the team’s No. 2 scorer (11.4 points per game). Known mostly for his long-range sharpshooting, Roberts connected on 34.4% of his 3-point attempts, adding 2.0 assists and 2.6 rebounds per game while shooting 92.5% from the foul line and committing just 1.5 turnovers each time out during WSU’s most successful season in a decade – the Cougars won 22 games and advanced to the semifinal round of the NIT.

Roberts, a graduate transfer, will fill an immediate backcourt need for the West Coast Conference’s Dons, who compiled a 24-10 record last season and earned a bid to the NCAA Tournament. USF lost standout guard Jamaree Bouyea to graduation. Coach Todd Golden – a Kyle Smith disciple – left the Hilltop for the University of Florida shortly after the season.

The Cougs are still awaiting updates from starting posts Mouhamed Gueye and Efe Abogidi, both of whom declared for the NBA draft and entered the transfer portal this offseason. The two have until June 1 to exit the draft pool. Abogidi is reportedly considering Maryland, Arizona, Florida and a return to WSU. Gueye, who competed last week at the NBA G League Elite Camp, told recently that he’s “50/50” on whether he’ll remain in the draft or play at least one more collegiate season. Coming back to WSU is “definitely” an option, he said.

WSU’s 2022 recruiting class is up to three players: Saint Mary’s transfer guard Jabe Mullins, four-star 7-footer Adrame Diongue and explosive Central Valley High guard Dylan Darling.