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Trey Thomas enters the portal, too

This one’s a bit of a surprise.

NCAA Basketball: SEC Conference Tournament Quarterfinals - Kentucky vs Vanderbilt Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The race to the transfer portal... continues.

Okay. On a certain level, Trey Thomas transferring makes sense. Thomas did start 17 games last season and played 23.1 minutes per game, averaging 5.8 ppg, though he did shoot just 30.1 percent from three.

The rationale here strikes me as somewhat similar to Noah Shelby’s departure, announced on Saturday. Ezra Manjon, the team’s starting point guard, had already announced that he will be returning next season, and while Tyrin Lawrence declared for the NBA Draft yesterday, logically he doesn’t seem likely to stick. Paul Lewis will claim the backup minutes at the point, and local product Isaiah West — who was a top-50 recruit before he hurt his knee during his junior season of high school (and seemed to be back in form after returning, though his recruiting rankings don’t reflect it) — will be joining the program next season.

There are only so many minutes to go around. I don’t know if the reason has to do with a looming minutes crunch, but it would definitely make sense. This departure is Vanderbilt’s fifth to the transfer portal, and the Commodores now have four scholarships available going into the spring.