Illinois basketball reserve big man enters NCAA transfer portal


Mar 21, 2024; Omaha, NE, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini forward Dain Dainja (42) drives past Morehead State Eagles guard Riley Minix (22) during the second half in the first round of the 2024 NCAA Tournament at CHI Health Center Omaha. Mandatory Credit: Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

Illinois basketball player Dain Dainja has entered his name into the NCAA transfer portal, he announced Monday on social media.

The 6-foot-9, 270-pound center averaged 6.1 points and 3.6 rebounds in about 10 minutes per game. He was one of six players to appear in every game for the 2023-24 Illini (29-9), whose season ended Saturday with a loss to top-seeded UConn in the NCAA Tournament’s Elite Eight.

Dainja said he was thankful to get his degree from the University of Illinois and thanked fans and the program, singling out strength and conditioning coach Adam Fletcher for “putting in countless hours of work and helping me reach my full potential.”

“I will forever be grateful for the opportunity I had here,” Dainja wrote on “This place will forever be family to me!”

Dainja played two seasons at Illinois after transferring from Baylor. He played three games for the Bears in 2021-22 after redshirting the previous season.

Luke Goode and Ty Rodgers are the lone rotation players expected to return next season for Illinois, who also expect back redshirt returnee Sencire Harris and key freshmen Amani Hansberry, Dra Gibbs-Lawhorn and Nico Moretti. They have a three-person high school recruiting class and are expected to dip into the transfer portal to help fill the roster.

What’s next for Illinois basketball? Transfer portal, NBA, recruiting and more

This article originally appeared on Journal Star: llinois basketball roster news: Dain Dainja in NCAA transfer portal

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Publish date : 2024-04-01 18:45:30

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