MU guard Pinson enters transfer portal

Missouri’s Xavier Pinson holds the ball Feb. 24 at Mizzou Arena. Pinson entered the transfer portal Tuesday.

Joel Lorenzi

Missouri guard Xavier Pinson entered the transfer portal, a team spokesperson confirmed Tuesday.

The news comes after the Tigers’ first-round exit from the NCAA Tournament in a loss to Oklahoma on Saturday. Pinson did not play the final 5:52 of the game, which raised questions amoung some Missouri fans about coach Cuonzo Martin’s decision-making.

The broadcast suggested that he had been injured, but Pinson took to Instagram after the game to dispel the rumor, posting on his story that he was “100% physically healthy, 100% mentally hurt.” He followed with several other cryptic messages through the weekend that stirred rumors of a transfer.

While Martin has a fruitful class of freshmen to look forward to — including four-star point guard Anton Brookshire — he’ll likely seek some veteran leadership in the backcourt. Senior Dru Smith and Dru Buggs are not expected to use the additional year of eligibility the NCAA granted to all players for next season.

Pinson’s production is a big loss. The junior averaged 13.6 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists this season.