Marquette lands Minnesota transfer Wally Ellenson

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sport

Wisconsin native will sit out 2014-15 season and have two years of eligibility remaining.

New Marquette head coach Steve Wojciechowski reeled in another transfer Wednesday in former Minnesota guard Wally Ellenson. Ellenson is 6-foot-6 and hails from Rice Lake, Wisconsin and has two years of eligibility remaining.

"We are thrilled to welcome Wally to the Marquette men's basketball family," Wojciechowski said in a press release. "Wally is a young man of outstanding character. He is an elite-level athlete and adds talent, athleticism, and competitive spirit to our basketball team. We are extremely excited about the impact he will have at Marquette."

Ellenson is a two-sport athlete who featured more prominently in track and field in his time with the Golden Gophers. He is a two-time All-American in the high jump and finished second in that event at this year's NCAA outdoor championships. In basketball, he has played in only 18 games and totaled 34 points in 110 minutes.

Perhaps most intriguing about Ellenson's addition are two subplots that come into play as a result.

Firstly, Marquette has now reached its 13 scholarship limit for the 2014-15 season, and the roster is likely set in stone. That means the Golden Eagles will start the season with just 10 eligible players. They will add Indiana transfer Luke Fischer after first semester ends in December, but could be looking at serious depth issues throughout next season. Both Ellenson and Loyola Marymount transfer Gabe Levin will sit out the year and debut in 2015-16.

Moreover, Ellenson's transfer paves the way for his younger brother, five-star power forward Henry Ellenson, to commit to Marquette. Henry ranks fifth in the ESPN 100 for the Class of 2015 and has offers from numerous big time college programs such as North Carolina, UCLA, Georgetown and even Wojciechowski's old employer Duke. At 6-foot-9, 225 pounds, Henry could be the game changing recruit Wojciechowski needs to return Marquette to its former glory.

Whether Wally ever makes a significant contribution in a Marquette uniform is certainly in question, but the impact of his transfer on the future of the program is undoubtedly massive.

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