Illinois Basketball: Transfer Trey McGowens hears from the Illini

The pool is deep with transfers right now, and the Illinois basketball team has been diving on in.

On Thursday, the Illini were named among the teams who had contacted Ohio State transfer DJ Carton. He would be a great pick up for the Orange and Blue. But Carton wasn’t the only name dropped that Illinois was interested in on Thursday. Brad Underwood and the Illini coaching staff had also been in contact with Pittsburgh transfer Trey McGowens.

McGowens was a 6-foot-3, 175-pound combo-guard from Hargrave Military Academy and residing in Chatham, Virginia when he was originally being recruited. He was the No. 109 player in the class of 2018 and the No. 12 combo-guard in the nation. He was also the No. 5 player in the state of Virginia.

A ton of teams were after McGowens during his first recruitment. He had roughly 31 scholarship offers which included the likes of Minnesota, Baylor and Pittsburgh. He only took one official visit and that was to Pittsburgh. After that visit, he committed to the program.


Illinois wasn’t in the mix and I don’t believe they even offered McGowens a scholarship the first time around. But, on Thursday, Corey Evans of Rivals.com reported that McGowens had heard from multiple teams including Wichita State, Ole Miss, Georgia, Arkansas, Nebraska, TCU, DePaul, Xavier, South Carolina, Georgia Tech, Seton Hall, Iowa State, USC, UConn and Illinois.

That is a big list of programs that are calling McGowens, and I am sure the list will continue to grow. But it is interesting to see Illinois’ name in there. They are doing their due diligence with the transfer market. Underwood knows that the team is going to need more talent in 2021-22. Getting a solid transfer or two right now would benefit the team greatly.

Next: Illini pursuing Ohio State transfer DJ Carton

Do I think we have a chance at McGowens? The answer is probably not. There is a wide range of programs coming after the kid, and we never had a prior connection with him. I would be shocked to see Illinois’ name mentioned in regards to his recruitment moving forward. But I have seen this coaching staff do some amazing things.

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