Julius Marble transfers to Texas A&M, Davis Smith withdraws from portal


MSU guard Jaden Akins (3) and forward Julius Marble (34) box out Michigan forward Caleb Houstan on Jan. 29, 2022/ Photo Credit: Sarah Smith/WDBM

Nathan Stearns, Sports Broadcast Director

EAST LANSING, Mich— Michigan State coach Tom Izzo received some mixed news on Monday afternoon.

After entering the transfer portal on April 19, junior forward Julius Marble announced that he would be transferring to Texas A&M to join head coach Buzz Williams. Marble, a Dallas native, now returns home to join a team that went 27-13 and finished as the NIT runner up.

In other news, sophomore guard Davis Smith has withdrawn his name from the portal. He originally entered the portal on April 1.

The loss of Marble is significant for a Spartan team that has also seen forwards Marcus Bingham Jr. and Gabe Brown declare for the NBA draft, as well as guard Max Christie (despite not hiring an agent.) A reliable rotation player, Marble averaged 6.4 points and 3.3 rebounds a game in 36 appearances. Overall, he appeared in 100 games over a three-year span for MSU and rotated in consistently as a center with Bingham and Joey Hauser.

This past season saw Marble shoot a career best 59% from the floor. A consistent mid-range threat, the 6-foot-9, 245-pound junior scored in double figures on six separate occasions.

In 2020-21, Marble averaged four points a game in nine minutes of action on average. He also appeared in 27 games as a freshman, averaging 1.7 points a game.

MSU forward Julius Marble tries to the save the ball from going out-of-bounds during the Spartans’ 79-74 loss on Feb. 19, 2022/Photo Credit: Sarah Smith/WDBM

With the departure of Marble, the Spartans currently only have nine players on scholarship, five of whom are forwards. The Spartans also only have one true center on the roster (sophomore Mady Sissoko), although Joey Hauser is set to return. 2022 four-star commit Jaxon Kohler may also be asked to play more in the post in certain lineups.

Smith, meanwhile, has served as a solid scout team player in each of the past two seasons for MSU. He has appeared in 19 games over a two-year span and has compiled one rebound, two assists and one block. With him returning, the Spartans have two confirmed walk-ons returning (Steven Izzo), although former Western Michigan guard Jason Whitens may also return after tearing his ACL in the 2021 offseason.