After starting three seniors for most of the 2014-15 season, the Minnesota men’s basketball team will begin a youth movement next year.
Seven recruits will arrive on campus for the first time June 15, meaning the team’s roster will look very different than a season ago.
“I’ve been a coaching high-major basketball now [for seven years,]” Minnesota assistant coach Nate Pomeday said at a recent Chalk Talk event in Park Rapids. “I’ve never been part of a seven man recruiting class when you only have 13 scholarships.”
Pomeday said the Gophers were looking at longer and faster athletes, as well as better shooters, in this class. He said after this class gains a year of experience from this upcoming season, the Gophers will have a “fantastic product” in 2016-17.
Here’s a short look at each of the seven members of the Gophers recruiting class, listed in alphabetical order:
Dorsey is a 6 foot tall point guard from Port Tobacco, Maryland, and rated as a four-star recruit by ESPN.com.
In 25 games his senior season at Clinton Christian High School, Dorsey averaged 23 points, 3.9 assists and three steals per game.
With senior guards Deandre Mathieu and Andre Hollins leaving the team, Dorsey may have the easiest path of the seven recruits to start his first year.
“Kevin’s a great full-court defender,” Pomeday said at the Chalk Talk event in Park Rapids. “Similar to what you saw with Deandre Mathieu the past two years, when he’d really get up and guard people 94 feet, Kevin’s that type of guy.”
Fitzgerald transferred to the Gophers after his sophomore year at Texas A&M and will sit out next season due to NCAA transfer rules.
The 6-foot-7-inch forward averaged 7.3 points and 2.3 rebounds per game during his sophomore year with the Aggies, before sitting out the last 10 games of the season due to a knee injury.
Pomeday said at Chalk Talk Fitzgerald stuck out to the Gophers because of his versatility on the court.
“Versatility is a big piece of what we’re trying to do,” Pomeday said. “Devonte fits that.”
A 6-foot-6-inch wing from Philadelphia, Gilbert won three Pennsylvania state titles in his high school career.
Rated as a three-star recruit by ESPN.com, in his senior year at Constitution High School in Philadelphia, Gilbert averaged 17.6 points, 11 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 2.1 blocks per game.
A four-time state champion at DeLaSalle High School in Minneapolis, 6-foot-1-inch guard Jarvis Johnson is the only incoming freshman from Minnesota in the Gophers recruiting class.
Rated as a four-star recruit by ESPN.com, Johnson averaged 11.3 points, 3.5 assists and 2.3 steals per game his senior season.
“Best player in the state,” Pomeday said at Chalk Talk.
Reggie Lynch is the only other member of the recruiting class from Minnesota, but he started out his career at Illinois State before transferring to the Gophers.
The tallest member of the Gophers 2015 recruiting class at 6-feet-10-inches, the center will sit out the 2015 season and have two years of
eligibility remaining afterwards.
In his sophomore season at Illinois State, Lynch averaged 9.5 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.8 blocks per game.
“It was a fantastic fit for us,” Pomeday said at Chalk Talk.