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Niego to transfer, look for scholarship opportunites

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After spending his freshman season as a walk-on for the Hoosiers, Harrison Niego will transfer from the program in search of a Division I scholarship.

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Walk-on point guard Harrison Niego announced late Friday evening that he would be leaving the Hoosier basketball program to pursue a Division I scholarship.

In a press release provided by IU, Tom Crean spoke highly of Niego's time at Indiana, which saw him see increasing minutes due to injuries late in the Big Ten season for the Hoosiers.

"We will miss Harrison, but I understand and we will support him fully and completely," said IU Coach Tom Crean. "In our minds, he will always be part of our Hoosier family.  He did everything that we had asked of him and more.  He got better and made us better."

"I certainly believe that he is a Division I player and we want to help him in any way we can to achieve his goal of earning a scholarship," added Crean. "He will impact a program with his decision making, leadership, shooting and tenacity on defense and is a high character young man. He brings a tremendous work ethic and great energy to everything he does."

Niego featured in 25 games, playing 107 minutes and scoring 11 points on the year. 66 of those minutes came in the final 14 regular season games as injuries to both James Blackmon, Jr. and Robert Johnson opened up playing time for the walk-on freshman.

However, with both Johnson and Blackmon returning next season and the addition of recruits Curtis Jones and Grant Gelon, the crowded backcourt likely would not have allowed much playing time for Niego.

The Hoosiers will likely be without a scholarship to offer the sophomore-to-be. Currently, the Hoosiers have no open scholarships pending Troy Williams' decision to potential forgo his senior year and enter the NBA Draft. Furthermore, Crean and his staff have already extended a scholarship offer to JuCo swingman Freddie McSwain.