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Nebrasketball: Roster Shuffling Continues as Akol Arop & Elijah Wood Leave Program

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: MAR 05 Nebraska at Michigan Photo by Steven King/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

In addition to walk-on Bret Porter and scholarship forward Yvan Ouedraogo, fellow teammates Akol Arop and Elijah Wood have also entered their names in the NCAA transfer portal and will look to continue their college basketball careers in another uniform.

Arop, a 6-foot-5 forward from Omaha, spent the last two seasons in the Nebraska program but missed the 2020-21 season following knee surgery in November. In 2019-20, he played in 21 games, averaging 1.0 points and 1.3 rebounds per game.

Arop’s best performance came at Michigan when he set season highs in both points (5) and rebounds (6) in 20 minutes of game action. Arop also had five points at Minnesota and a pair of blocked shots and four rebounds in a season-high 23 minutes against Indiana in the Big Ten Tournament.

Wood, a 6-foot-5 guard from Potomac, Maryland, saw action in 13 games this season and averaged 0.8 points and 0.4 rebounds per game. He set season bests in points (8), rebounds (3), 3-pointers (2) and minutes (12) against Doane. He dished out a pair of assists in nine minutes in the opener against McNeese State.

Wood played in nine Big Ten games and scored his only points in conference play in the win over Rutgers. He is also a former teammate of five-star signee Bryce McGowens, the younger brother of current UNL guard Trey McGowens. Wood played a role in helping the Huskers sign the younger McGowens in the incoming freshman class.

Coach Hoiberg offered the following comment when confirming the departures of Arop, Ouedraogo, and Wood:

Everyone in our program appreciates Akol, Yvan and Elijah’s contributions to our program, especially over the past year during the pandemic. I have enjoyed coaching all of them and will support them as they finish the spring semester and begin the process of looking at other schools. I wish them the best in the future.

Including Teddy Allen’s departure from the program prior to the conclusion of the regular season, that now marks five players who have left the team. This is certainly not something to panic over, however. With both Fred Hoiberg at the helm and the eligibility waiver in effect for immediate eligibility to off-season transfers going into next season, this should be widely expected.

There are now three open scholarship roster spots for the 2021-22 season for Nebraska. Besides O-line, what kind of player do you want to see the Cornhuskers target most: A big man center? A true point guard? A JuCo recruit? A true freshman? A grad transfer from a power-five team?