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Former 5-Star SF Emoni Bates Transfers to Eastern Michigan from Memphis

Erin WalshJune 29, 2022

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Former 5-star forward Emoni Bates has transferred to Eastern Michigan, he told Joe Tipton of On3.com.

"I'm committing to Eastern Michigan," Bates told Tipton. "I'm coming home."

Bates grew up in Ypsilanti, Michigan, where EMU is located.

The news comes after Bates revealed in a previous interview with Tipton of On3.com that he had entered the transfer portal on April 16 after just one season with the Memphis Tigers.

"I'd like to thank Coach Penny, my teammates, and the entire coaching staff at the University of Memphis for giving me the opportunity to be a Tiger. Thank you Tiger Nation for embracing me and all of you who supported our team throughout this season. With that being said, I have decided to enter the transfer portal," Bates said at the time.

Bates averaged 9.7 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists while shooting 38.6 percent from the floor and 32.9 percent from deep in 18 games.

The 18-year-old's path to Memphis was an interesting one, as he was expected to play professionally right out of high school. Before his junior year in 2020, however, Bates committed to Michigan State. He then reopened his recruitment in April 2021 and ultimately committed to Memphis in August.

In June 2019, ESPN ranked Bates as the top high school player in the nation, aside from class. He was above now-NBA stars Evan Mobley, Cade Cunningham, Jalen Green and Jonathan Kuminga.

Bates' decision to join the Eagles comes as no surprise after he listed Eastern Michigan as one of his top six schools in early May. He also told Tipton in a previous interview that he was seriously considering his hometown school.

"People probably look at me crazy because I’m considering Eastern," Bates said in May. "But if I went there, I would be like the neighborhood hero. I used to play at Eastern during my high school games when I was at Lincoln, and we used to pack it out every time. That would be crazy for me to be able to bring love to the city."

Louisville, Michigan, Seton Hall and DePaul were among the other schools Bates considered.

Bates undoubtedly has the ability to be a great player, it's now just about unlocking his potential, and he should be able to do that with his hometown Eagles.

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