With the 2023-24 season quickly approaching it is time for a project that has become somewhat of a tradition for me here at Gator Country–predicting the statistical production of incoming transfers.
For those of you who may not be familiar with this, I created a system three years ago to predict the statistical production of incoming transfers using methods unlike anything I have seen across the college basketball landscape. How successful have they been? Well, I’d say fairly. If you’d like to go back and see my projections from the past three seasons and how they worked out you can do so here and here–though I’m also going to post last year’s predictions and results at the bottom of this article should you be so interested. .
Each year of predictions brings on its own set of challenges. The algorithm had pretty much dialed in what Mike White was going to do schematically, so the change to Todd Golden meant some tweets were necessary. We have one year of sample size regarding what Golden basketball could look like at Florida, but given how the season turned out–many changes can be expected.
These challenges make the process interesting, and ultimately I just had to take in all the information I could and make the tweeks I think will make for the most accurate projections. For better or worse, it will be something we can look back on after the season to see how they did.
I should also note that due to the fact Julian Rishwain isn’t expected to play for much, if not all the season, I did not include him in the projections.
Here are the 2023-24 Transfer Projections:
There it is, out there for the world to see before we find out what happens over the next six months and we see how close the projections are!
An overall takeaway–I think that every take here is going to work out pretty well. In recent years I predicted a few misses on transfers, predictions that ultimately came true. I don’t think any of these players are going to be misses, and I think each will play a key role in the rotation. However, I did not predict any of these players to be stars, which might come with some surprise or disappointment. Is it possible that one of these players explodes and is a 15-point per game All-SEC player? Sure–but based on the statistical indicators I look at, I’m not predicting it.
Walter Clayton was an absolutely elite shooter at Iona, but I’m expecting a dip from the 43% he shot from deep last season. 39% would still be absolutely tremendous at Florida, though there is definitely a chance he remains one of the best shooters in the country and blows past my projection for him.
Zyon Pullin ranks surprisingly well in a lot of the indicators my system looks at, resulting in him having the highest projection out of the guard transfers. Missing three games to start the season could be detrimental, and his lack of a consistent three-point jumper could be an issue. Most talk out of camp is that Walter Clayton is ahead of him on the depth chart so with my projections having him ahead in minutes and points there is a major opportunity to be wrong here–but I have to trust the system.
Tyrese Samuel is *technically* the easiest player to project at Florida, so we’ll see if the results are actually accurate or if we’ll be surprised in either direction. So much of projecting transfers is trying to figure out how a mid-major player will now do at the high-major level but with Samuel coming from the Big East we should have a pretty good idea of what he is. I’m hoping for these projections to be the most accurate.
Now, things get the most interesting with Micah Handlogten. Florida’s staff was extremely high on Handlogten when they landed the Marshall transfer but from the start I was pushing back on the idea that a freshman from the Sun Belt would be a major contributor at Florida right away. The staff has cooled on their immediate opinions that he would be an immediate starter at the SEC level, though they’re definitely going to try to make it happen. I might not be the highest on Handlogten for the upcoming season, but remember these projections are just that–for the upcoming season. As only a sophomore Handlogten has a ton of time to develop and he could very well be an elite starter by the time he’s an upperclassman.
Be sure to let me know what you think, and I look forward to revisiting these at the end of the season. As mentioned earlier, here are last year’s predictions and how they ended up working out:
Kyle Lofton Projected Stats:
Kyle Lofton 2022-23 Stats:
Will Richard Projected Stats:
Will Richard 2022-23 Stats:
Trey Bonham Projected Stats:
Trey Bonham 2022-23 Stats
Alex Fudge Projected Stats:
Alex Fudge 2022-23 Stats