With the Minnesota Golden Gopher men’s basketball season kicking off on November 9th, we will be previewing all members of the roster. Battle, a DeLaSalle graduate, transfers into the program from George Washington accompanied by shooting prowess and a local recruit vibe.
Height: 6’ 7”
Weight: 225 lbs
The forward from Robbinsdale played two years of Atlantic-10 basketball, averaging 17.3 points and 5.2 rebounds on 47.5% shooting from the floor, including 35.4% from three on 6.4 attempts per game during the COVID-shortened season of 2020-2021 (15 games). He was named All-Atlantic Ten Third Team for these numbers and is the most accomplished of the many incoming transfers for the Gophers this season both by statistical accumulation and previous level of competition.
On his previous team, Battle filled the role of a spread-the-floor big, evidenced by his 6.4 three-point attempts per game. He also showed flashes of driving to the basket off the dribble as his shooting skill required the defense requiring to his ability from distance. Jamison averaged a whopping 36.5 minutes per game for the Colonials while playing in and starting all 15 of their games. This kind of durability would be helpful for a squad that will be short truly impactful players. It remains to be seen what kind of defensive impact the Robbinsdale product will have as both his defensive rating and rebounding numbers weren’t overly impressive in his two years in DC.
Battle figures to start at one of the two forward spots for the Gophers this season. He is the most accomplished scorer on the roster and his shooting ability will help a team that will be desperate for players who can provide an impact on the offensive side of the ball. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Battle as one of the top scorers on the team with some possessions geared towards him getting open looks in the corner and wing. The shooting tandem of Payton Willis and Battle isn’t anything to sneeze at, with career 3-point percentages of 35.6% and 36.3%, respectively, especially considering the 28.4% the team shot from deep last year, good for 341st in the nation.