Men’s Basketball: Sophomore guard Julian Roper II to enter transfer portal


Angeli Mittal/The Daily Northwestern

Julian Roper II readies to shoot a free throw. The sophomore averaged 4.4 points per game and 3.7 rebounds per game this past season.

Lawrence Price, Sports Editor

With speculation of which returning players will come back to Evanston after their historic season abound, one thing is for sure: Northwestern men’s basketball will officially be without sophomore guard Julian Roper II. He announced on Twitter Monday evening that he would be entering the transfer portal.

“Being at Northwestern has been nothing short of amazing and I will forever cherish the memories I made here,” Roper II said in his tweet. “I would like to thank Coach Collins for giving me the opportunity to attend such a prestigious university.”

Roper II was sidelined for the majority of Big Ten play and the celebrated season, playing only 15 of NU’s 36 contests due to an ankle injury, coach Chris Collins noted at in-season media availability. The Detroit native’s time off the floor began against the Jan. 23 Wisconsin match, leading to him missing the remainder of that game and the following three contests. He returned to play versus Michigan Feb. 2, but reinjured the ankle, closing out his 2022-23 campaign.

Although Roper II’s stat sheet doesn’t show it, he averaged 4.1 points per game and 3.5 rebounds a game over the two seasons, the two-way guard’s presence was felt on both ends of the floor. This resulted in an uptick in his minutes and an important role in the rotation both his seasons in Evanston.

With starters senior guard Boo Buie, redshirt senior guard Chase Audige and senior forward Robbie Beran’s status of return still in limbo, Roper II’s chance to crack the starting lineup was increasing. Alongside sophomore guard Brooks Barnhizer, who broke out of his shell this past season, the future looked bright between the two.

Following Casey Simmons decision to transfer following the 2021-22 season, this news leaves Barnhizer as the sole recruit from NU’s 2021 class still on the team.

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