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RR Ralphie Report: Colorado women’s basketball finalizes roster after busy transfer portal


News Junkie
Syndication: The Ames Tribune

Nirmalendu Majumdar/Ames Tribune / USA TODAY NETWORK

JR Payne landed two more transfers this week.

The last few years of Colorado women’s basketball has been defined by stability and continuity. Led by fifth-year seniors Jaylyn Sherrod and Quay Miller, the Buffs’ starting lineup had nearly 500 career starts between them.

Gone are Sherrod and Miller, and so too are Aaronnette Vonleh, Maddie Nolan, Tameiya Sadler and Charlotte Whittaker. The only returning rotation players will long-time starter Frida Formann, Missouri transfer Sara-Rose Smith and Colorado’s own Kindyll Wetta.

JR Payne has had to replace almost the entire roster. She’s leaned heavily into the transfer portal, landing six transfers, including two this week. This in addition to the incoming freshmen, most notably Tabitha Betson, and redshirt freshman Kennedy Sanders, who is expected to contribute.

JR replaced Quay Miller with Lior Garzon, a 6’1 forward from Oklahoma State. She found two post players in Jade Masogayo (Missouri State) and JoJo Nworie (Texas Tech). She fortified the backcourt with a pair of 3-and-D wings in Nyamer Diew (Iowa State) and Johanna Teder (Washington State). She also added Ayianna Johnson from Minnesota, though the 6’3 forward is more a project than an immediate contributor.

That’s a lot of names that we don’t know, but we will learn them soon enough. (It would help to read Brian Howell’s articles at BuffZone.) It’s the Buffs want to be competitive their first season in the Big 12. Payne decided not to rebuild, but to reload with a number of veteran players. There are obvious questions about how everyone will play together, and even more questions about who will even be healthy, as Nworie and Teder in particular have struggled with injuries.

The Buffs are up to 14 scholarship players and could still add another. It’s still unclear how the roster will shake out in terms of minutes and roles, but Payne will welcome the open competition in the preseason and early part of the 2024-25 season.

It’s also worth noting that the Buffs are up to eight international players, as you can see the full roster below.

G — Frida Formann, Gr. (Denmark)

G — Sara-Rose Smith, Gr. (Australia/Michigan)

F — Nyamer Diew, Gr. (Iowa State)

F — Lior Garzon, Gr. (Israel/Oklahoma State)

G — Johanna Teder, Gr. (Estonia/Washington State)

G — Kindyll Wetta, Sr.

C — JoJo Nworie, r-Jr. (Nigeria/Texas Tech)

F — Jade Masagayo, Jr. (Missouri State)

F — Ayianna Johnson, So. (Minnesota)

G — Kennedy Sanders, r-Fr.

F — Tabitha Betson, Fr. (Australia)

G — Lova Lagerlid, Fr. (Sweden)

F — Grace Oliver, Fr.

G — Erin Powell, Fr. (United Kingdom)

by Sam Metivier
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