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Michigan reaches out to Pittsburgh forward John Hugley IV after transfer portal entry

Hugley was Pitt’s leading scorer and rebounder during the 2021-22 season.

NCAA Basketball: Legends Classic-Michigan at Pittsburgh Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The Michigan Wolverines have reached out to Pittsburgh forward John Hugley IV, who plans to enter the transfer portal, as reported by Joe Tipton with On3.

Hugley averaged 8.0 points and 3.6 rebounds in eight games this season before deciding to sit out the rest of the semester to focus on his mental health. He did play against Michigan in November, scoring nine points in 22 minutes in a game that the Wolverines won handily, 91-60 in Brooklyn.

The forward was Pitt’s leading scorer and rebounder in the 2021-22 season, averaging 14.8 points and 7.9 rebounds per game. He has scored double-digit points in 27 of his 47 collegiate appearances, with his career high coming in a win over Boston College in 2022, when he scored 32 points.

At 6-foot-9 and 240 points, Hugley is a big body in the paint who can dominate with his back to the basket. He’s also quite nimble for his size and doesn’t mind popping out after setting a screen to shoot a three. He’s a decent passer as well.

Hugley could play well next to Hunter Dickinson; we saw the high-low game between Dickinson and Tarris Reed Jr. work well in spurts this past season, and Hugley can be just as dominant near the basket. The Wolverines clearly have a need at power forward, and it remains to be seen if that need becomes even greater once the season ends and players consider transferring away from Ann Arbor. Regardless, if Dickinson transfers or leaves for the draft, Hugley could probably compete with Reed to start at the 5.

Props to Michigan for keeping an keen eye on the transfer portal and reaching out. Hopefully the Wolverines can land another solid big man to add to their plethora of post players.