Gators In Final Eight Schools For EJ Jarvis

As we get deeper and deeper into transfer portal season the Gators are starting to get a clearer picture of what talent they could possibly land and that continued on Sunday as Yale transfer EJ Jarvis released the list of his final eight schools.


Jarvis is a 6’8”, 220 pound post player that the Gators eagerly offered soon after he entered the portal. Filling out the frontcourt has been a top priority of Florida’s coaching staff after a year where they had paper thin depth in the post. Going back to last offseason the Gators knew they wanted one more frontcourt piece than they ended up having–so the depth wasn’t where they wanted it to be even before CJ Felder and Colin Castleton went down to injuries. From last year’s team that lacked frontcourt depth Colin Castleton has graduated and CJ Felder and Jason Jitoboh have hit the transfer portal, so there is a lot of work to be done in the frontcourt.

Florida hopes that Jarvis can be an addition that adds versatility, toughness, and energy to the frontcourt. Last season he averaged 11.3 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks–numbers that are solid, but don’t necessarily explode off the page. While Jarvis might not be a stat sheet stuffer he was a key role player on a Yale team that had an excellent year going 21-9 and nearly going to the NCAA Tournament–falling in the Ivy League championship game to the Princeton team that went on to make a Sweet Sixteen. Yale actually finished 65th in KenPom, higher than the Gators who finished 75th. When thinking about how Jarvis’ game might translate to the high major level, factoring in the quality of his Yale team that went to the NIT (where they lost to Vanderbilt) is something to consider. 


For Jarvis, the transfer portal wasn’t as much a decision as it was a necessity. He was at Yale for four years, and since the Ivy League doesn’t allow graduate players to compete, he had to leave in order to play his final year. 


At 6’8” and 220 Jarvis primarily played the center position for Yale, and while position titles in 2023 are far less important than they have been in the past, the center position does describe what Jarvis does. He’s primarily a post player who gets his work done around the rim, carving out space and finishing powerfully at the rim. Jarvis is a dominant physical force at the Ivy League level and the way he dunks everything around the rim makes him look like a high major athlete. He’s probably at his best in the mid-post area, catching the ball and squaring up towards the rim where he can use his explosiveness to beat his defender off the bounce. If he were to go to Florida he would be far from the most physically imposing frontcourt player in the SEC, but he probably has the bulk and athleticism to hang in most matchups. It’s also somewhat likely that the Gators would see him more as a “4,” as Todd Golden likes to play two big, physical players at the same time to control the glass and command the paint. If Jarvis were to play the power forward spot he might be able to provide some spacing as he shot 41% from three last year–though it’s pivotal to point out that it was on small volume, 13-32 on the season. 


When it comes to rebounding Jarvis’ numbers are solid, but not outstanding. Rebounding is something that usually translates from leagues like the Ivy to the high major level so you could probably expect Jarvis to be a capable rebounder at the SEC level if he played center, but if he played power forward he would be an above-average rebounder. Considering the Gators were so poor on the glass last season, there could be a major correction by Florida’s staff that could include playing someone like Jarvis at the 4. 


Easily the most impressive ability for Jarvis is hit shot blocking. His 8.7% block rate was 29th in the country last season and he regularly put up highlight reel swats, normally plays where he would anticipate the offense and rotate from the weak side to meet the ball at the rim. It takes anticipation, length, and athleticism to block shots at a high level and Jarvis has all of those traits, something that would fit in nicely to Florida’s defensive philosophy. 


Jarvis’ final eight schools are Florida, Georgia Tech, VCU, Miami, Northwestern, Cal, Georgetown, and Notre Dame. The Gators are considered to be in a solid position for Jarvis, though Georgetown is also considered to be in a good spot. Jarvis is from Washington originally, and Ed Cooley has historically done very well with transfers at Providence and is now looking to completely retool Georgetown.

Eric Fawcett
Eric is a basketball coach and writer from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His work has been found at NBA international properties, ESPN, Bleacher Report, CBS Sports, Lindy's and others. He loves zone defenses, the extra pass, and a 30 second shot clock. Growing up in Canada, an American channel showing SEC basketball games was his first exposure to Gator hoops, and he has been hooked ever since. You can follow him on Twitter at @ericfawcett_.