Texas adds experienced, versatile transfer F Arthur Kaluma

Texas gets a valuable addition to its frontcourt rotation entering the 2024-25 season with Kansas State junior transfer forward Arthur Kaluma.
Arthur Kaluma
Arthur Kaluma / Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

Per CBS Sports' Jon Rothstein, former Kansas State Wildcats junior transfer forward Arthur Kaluma has committed to Texas basketball on June 27. Kaluma committed to Texas over the SMU Mustangs and Memphis Tigers.

Texas basketball rounds out rotation for 2024-25 with Kansas State transfer F Arthur Kaluma

Kaluma's commitment fills the 13th and final remaining scholarship spot for head coach Rodney Terry and the Longhorns entering the inaugural season in the SEC in 2024-25. He was the top-ranked transfer available late in this portal cycle, ranking as the No. 13 transfer small forward in the 247Sports Composite.

Texas's transfer-heavy rotation now features six players acquired from the portal this offseason. Kaluma joins former Oregon State sophomore guard Jordan Pope, Vanderbilt sophomore wing Malik Presley, Arkansas redshirt junior guard Tramon Mark, Indiana State junior guard Julian Larry, and Indiana State junior forward Jayson Kent in the Longhorns' 2024 portal class.

It's noteworthy that Kaluma knows Pope from when they played against each other in high school hoops a few years ago.

Kaluma committed to Texas just after taking an official visit to Austin earlier this week. Kaluma complimented Terry and the program along with the city of Austin coming out of his official visit on June 24 and 25.

"Texas has a beautiful campus, beautiful place to be. Austin, it's a lot better than I thought it was. Even though I lived in Dallas I've never had a chance to really see the city, and it's a beautiful city."

This was Kaluma's second time entering the transfer portal in as many offseasons. He spent the first two years of his collegiate career playing for the Creighton Blue Jays in the Big East. As a true freshman, Kaluma emerged as an impact two-way player starting at forward for the Blue Jays.

He earned Big East All-Freshman Team and All-Big East Tournament team honors in 2022.

Kaluma was a critical part of Creighton's deep postseason run to the Elite Eight in 2023, averaging around a dozen points per game and a half dozen rebounds while starting all 37 games he played.

Ahead of the 2023-24 season, Kaluma transferred to Kansas State to play his third year in college in the Big 12. He earned All-Big 12 Honorable Mention honors while posting career-best per-game averages for head coach Jerome Tang and the Wildcats.

Kaluma averaged nearly 15 points per game, seven rebounds, and two assists while shooting 43 percent from the field and 35 percent from beyond the arc this past season for Kansas State. He was a critical two-way player for the Wildcats last season, leading the team in rebounding, second-chance points, and defensive win shares.

Texas adding Kaluma gives the frontcourt more depth and optional versatility in the rotation

The 6-foot-7 and 225-pound forward from the Northeast who attended Glendale (AZ) Dream City Christian High School adds more proven experience and two-way versatility to Texas's forward rotation. Just a few weeks ago, Texas was severely lacking frontcourt depth, outside of sixth-year senior center Kadin Shedrick.

In the last few weeks, Terry and staff have added commitments from the high school ranks and the transfer portal to fill the frontcourt depth need for the 2024-25 campaign. Along with getting Kaluma from the portal this week, Texas signed former three-star Vanderbilt center commit Jamie Vinson from high school in the 2024 class.

Kaluma joins a Texas frontcourt that returns Shedrick at the five, senior power forward Ze'Rik Onyema, and sophomore Devon Pryor, who can play at the three or the four if he continues to develop well this summer and during training camp this fall. Texas also added Kent from the transfer portal, who can give the Longhorns quality minutes at the four off the bench or in the starting five.

Here's a look at the scholarship forwards/bigs on Texas's projected 2024-25 roster.

F: Jayson Kent, Senior

F: Devon Pryor, Sophomore

F: Arthur Kaluma, Senior

PF: Ze'Rik Onyema, Senior

C: Jamie Vinson, Freshman

C: Kadin Shedrick, Senior

Terry and staff have done a nice job assembling a frontcourt unit with a good mix of talent, proven experience, and long-term upside with guys like Vinson and Pryor deeper down the bench.

Given the depth Texas has in the backcourt and on the wing entering the 2024-25 season in the projected rotation, I'd expect either Kaluma or Kent to start at the four next to Shedrick starting at the five.

A good idea for the Longhorns to start the regular season would be to give Kaluma the starting nod at the four while giving Kent significant minutes as a sixth of seventh-man coming off the bench. Kaluma has the proven experience as a starting forward for multiple major conference teams, including at Kansas State in America's best college hoops conference in the Big 12.

If he starts at the four, Kaluma not only gives you a scoring and facilitating boost on the offensive end from inside the arc, but also a solid defensive presence one-on-one in the frontcourt. Kaluma isn't the lengthiest defender in the world, but he is pretty athletic and quick. He knows where to be and has good instincts off-ball on defense.

Kaluma can help Texas improve on the glass on both ends

Texas ranked bottom five in the Big 12 last season in offensive rebounding and total rebounding percentage in conference play. Their woes on the glass cost them, as they lost over 80 percent of the games where they were beaten on the offensive boards in Big 12 play last season.

Another valuable aspect from Kaluma's addition to the frontcourt heading into next season is his ability to command the glass on both ends of the floor. We mentioned earlier that Kaluma led Kansas State in rebounds per game and second-chance points last season.

But that doesn't quite do it justice to describe how good Kaluma was in commanding the defensive glass and putting the ball in the basket on the offensive end on second-chance possessions. He ranked top 10 in the Big 12 among eligible players in defensive rebounding percentage (17.8 percent) and second-chance points per game (2.5) last season (per CBB Analytics).

Projecting Texas's starting lineup for 2024-25 season after adding Kaluma from the portal

PG: Jordan Pope

SG: Tramon Mark

W: Tre Johnson

F: Arthur Kaluma

C: Kadin Shedrick

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