Mike Moser, a pre-season All-American last season, is transferring to the University of Oregon after considering Washington and Gonzaga. Dana Altman has had success with fifth-year transfers in seasons past, and Moser is yet another talented player who will be spending his final season as a Duck
Moser spent his last three seasons (one being a required transfer year) at the University of Las Vegas. He transferred with Lon Kruger as the head coach, but spent the last season under Dave Rice, in his first season as a head coach.
The 6-8 forward was initially reported to be going to the University of Washington but denied that report, saying that his recruitment was open, and was considering the aforementioned UW, OU and Gonzaga. He ultimately felt most comfortable with the Ducks and their success with Arsalan Kazemi, Devoe Joseph and Olu Ashaolu as fifth-year transfers this past season under Altman.
This is a big blow to Washington, as Moser looked to fill the slot that was pegged for Aaron Gordon before he elected to go to the Arizona Wildcats and head coach Sean Miller. This leaves Washington with a frontcourt of Perris Blackwell, Shawn Kemp Jr., Jernard Jarreau and Desmond Simmons. While UW isn't necessarily thin on their frontline, adding a premier talent such as Moser would have been a big boon to the chances of making the NCAA Tournament for the first time in several seasons.
Watch for Moser to be successful in the fast-paced Oregon attack, as he excels at finishing in transition, and is also a strong rebounder and outlet passer to help get the ball out on the break for easy baskets.
If Moser insists on playing on the perimeter more, as he did in the past season, his role may be different. He is not a great outside shooter and doesn't have a particularly strong handle, but his athleticism will still allow him to be a solid wing. He projects to be more of a small forward in the NBA, where he will ultimately land, which may push him to ask Altman for more minutes on the outside.
His playing time and effectiveness took a step back this past season as he struggled through an elbow injury suffered in December. He was passed up by projected top-10 pick Anthony Bennet (also considered UW before this past season) in the rotation at the 4-spot and at the 3 as well.
This is a loss to Washington, but the depth that is int he UW frontcourt can handle the loss, even if it is still that: a loss.