Nate Sestina – Forward, Bucknell
2018-19 notable statistics: 15.8 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 80.8% FT, 38.0% 3P
Nate Sestina would be the ideal grad transfer pickup for Wisconsin this offseason. The 6’9 forward is the prototypical Badger big man and would thrive in Wisconsin’s offense with his versatile, inside-out skill set.
Sestina fits the mold of the modern stretch big, draining 38 percent of his threes for Bucknell last season, but he is far more than just a long-range marksman. He shot 60 percent from inside the arc in 2018-19 and can more than hold his own in the paint, hauling in 8.5 rebounds per game for the Bison. As mentioned, unless something changes, Wisconsin will be lacking in burly bodies down low, so Sestina’s presence would give a massive lift to the roster.
With the Badgers quite possibly having to wait until December to add Micah Potter to the rotation, Sestina would be a tremendous fit next to Nate Reuvers in the starting lineup from the outset of the season.
Unfortunately, a ton of other programs have already taken notice: according to a source close to the situation, Sestina has been contacted by nearly 50 schools. Indeed, he could very well be the best grad transfer available on the market at the moment.
If the Badgers are going to kick the tires here, they better do it sooner rather than later. One of the many schools that’s in hot pursuit of Sestina is Kentucky, and he has been in Lexington for a multi-day visit this week. It sounds like there is a strong possibility that a final decision could come shortly after the conclusion of that trip, which probably doesn’t bode well for any head coach interested in him not named John Calipari.
That being said, while the chances of him becoming a Badger appear to be slim to none right now, his tremendous fit for Wisconsin can’t be ignored. If I’m Greg Gard, I’m at least making a phone call to gauge Sestina’s interest.
UPDATE: Sestina has committed to play for Kentucky next season.