STARKVILLE — Mississippi State made a major splash in the transfer portal Wednesday night.
The Bulldogs officially announced the addition of former Tulane guard JerKaila Jordan, the reigning American Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year. She will be immediately eligible.
“JerKaila is a high character, hardworking, blue-collar player that has proven to be a very efficient scorer against multiple defenses,” MSU head coach Nikki McCray-Penson said in a news release. “She was the freshman of the year in a competitive conference, and we think she’s going to be able to help us both offensively and defensively. She is coming in with the mentality that she wants to win and help us compete for championships.”
Jordan, a New Orleans native, finished her freshman season averaging 16.7 points, 3.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2.3 steals per game. She was previously rated a five-star recruit and the No. 45 player in the 2020 class and was one of just three freshmen, along with Iowa’s Caitlin Clark and UConn’s Paige Bueckers, with at least 28 points in three consecutive games.
The addition of Jordan is a welcome one for an MSU roster that has seen six players depart the program since the end of the season. Most recently, former five-star recruit Madison Hayes and streaky sophomore guard Aliyah Matharu announced their intentions to transfer earlier this week.
Jordan also becomes the second major import for McCray-Penson since she took over for Vic Schaefer last April. Temple guard Ashley Jones joined the program in December after spending time at West Virginia and Temple. Jones earned AAC Newcomer of the Year honors in 2019-20 and averaged 16.0 points, 4.5 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game during that season.
MSU finished its 2020 campaign 10-9 and 5-7 in Southeastern Conference play. The Bulldogs also missed the NCAA tournament for the first time since the 2013-14 season.
Ben Portnoy reports on Mississippi State sports for The Dispatch. Follow him on Twitter at @bportnoy15.