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UVA’s Jesperson will transfer to Northern Iowa

May 25, 2013, 9:10 PM EST

Former Virginia guard Paul Jesperson has made his transfer decision today, and he’ll be joining the Northern Iowa Panthers.

Jesperson, a former Wisconsin Mr. Basketball, got off to a slow start in Charlottesville, seeing little playing time as a freshman. As a sophomore, his defensive prowess earned him more minutes, but his offensive skills still lagged. Jesperson averaged just 4.7 points in 25.7 minutes per game and opted to leave Tony Bennett’s program at the end of his sophomore season.

Jesperson had narrowed his options down to USC – where he would have played for new head coach Andy Enfield – and UNI. He announced his final decision via Twitter on Saturday evening.

The Panthers have several identifiable pluses for Jesperson: Cedar Falls is certainly closer to his home state of Wisconsin than Los Angeles, Jesperson will have a chance to play a larger role after sitting out his transfer season, and he’ll be playing for Ben Jacobson, architect of the Panthers’ legendary 2010 Sweet Sixteen run. With Creighton leaving the Missouri Valley, Jesperson may find himself playing a large role for a potential conference champion soon.

Eric Angevine is the editor of Storming the Floor. He tweets @stfhoops.