Kentucky’s Kyle Wiltjer transfers to Gonzaga
by Kyle Tucker, USA TODAY Sports
The news was later confirmed to the Louisville Courier-Journal by a person with knowledge of the situation who requested anonymity because the enrollment had not been made official yet.
Wiltjer and Wildcats coach John Calipari both released oddly-worded statements last month saying Wiltjer was considering a transfer — but also might stay.
In his earlier letter to fans, Wiltjer said after his experience on the Canadian national developmental team this summer, where he shined in international competition, he wanted “a more significant role” in college and “I recognize that my new and adjusted goals require me to make some very difficult upcoming decisions.”
Wiltjer, a 6-foot-10 long-range shooting specialist, is 15th on UK’s career 3-point percentage list (.390) and sank 90 threes in two seasons with the Wildcats. He averaged 7.3 points and 2.8 rebounds at Kentucky and was the Southeastern Conference’s Sixth Man of the Year in 2013.
But the former McDonald’s All-American lost his starting job after just nine games last season and has averaged only 17 minutes per game at Kentucky. Playing time will be even harder to come by this season with eight freshmen, including six McDonald’s All-Americans, joining the roster.
“After playing with Canada, Kyle feels like he could have a more prominent role in another program than he might have with us next season,” Calipari wrote in his letter to fans last month. “In my mind, Kyle is going to be a professional player as soon as his body begins to change. He has a mentality, a skill set and the length to be a pro, but the maturity of his body has not caught up with the rest of his game yet. He knows that and he’s working on that.
“If he does choose to go somewhere else, that school will be very lucky.”
With Wiltjer’s transfer, plus guard Julius Mays’ graduation and forward Nerlens Noel and guard Archie Goodwin going in the NBA draft, Kentucky will have just two major contributors back from last season: … [For more on Former Kentucky player Kyle Wiltjer transfers to Gonzaga, click here.]