Minnesota Assistant Kimani Young Getting it Done on Recruiting Trail

NEW YORK — When New York City guard Dupree McBrayer picked a college this past August, one of his primary reasons for choosing Minnesota over both Seton Hall and St. John’s was his relationship with Gophers assistant Kimani Young.

“[It was] very important,” the 6-foot-4 McBrayer told SNY.tv. “He was a straightforward person with me. We had a close bond from the beginning, from when he first started recruiting me. The fact that my mother and grandmother loved him was important, too.”

A Queens native who joined the Minnesota staff in 2013, Young not only helped land McBrayer, who is spending a postgraduate season at Sunrise (KS) Christian, but Maryland point guard Kevin Dorsey and New York big man Jonathan Nwankwo as well. To read more of this story, click here

Jarvis Johnson to Minnesota


Minnesota coach Richard Pitino continued his recruiting roll on Friday when he received a pledge from Jarvis Johnson, a 6-2 combo guard from Minneapolis (MN) DeLaSalle who took an official visit to campus last weekend.

Johnson also considered Wisconsin, UNLV, Baylor and Wichita State, but ended up being Pitino’s first recruit from the state of Minnesota.

“I would like to thank God first for putting me in the position that I am in today,” Johnson said. “I gave much thought and time into my college decision. I am proud to announce that I will be attending the University of Minnesota.”

Johnson, ranked No. 101 in the class of 2015 by 247 Sports, is super quick off of the bounce and can drill it from deep.  To read more of this story, click here

Jonathan Nwankwo to Minnesota

Jonathan Nwankwo, a 6-foot-9, 250-pound 2015 center from House of Sports and Victory Rock (FL) Prep, committed to Minnesota on his visit Friday night.

“I think it’s where his heart was the whole time,” his guardian Derrik Riullano told SNY.tv. “And coming here just confirmed it.”

He also considered Tennessee, Seton Hall, Rice, Temple and Fordham.

“He’s an interior presence,” Riullano said. “Defense, rebounding and strong finishes. He’s working hard down in Florida on his offensive skills. And he’s also working real hard in the weight room. He’s 250 now, and he’d like to get as close to 260 as he can while maintaining his speed and agility.” To read more of this story, click here

Dupree McBrayer to Minnesota



Dupree McBrayer has committed to Minnesota and will likely prep this year at Vermont Academy, sources confirmed to SNY.tv.

Evan Daniels of Scout.com was the first to report the news.

McBrayer also considered Seton Hall, St. John’s and Creighton, among others.

The 6-foot-4 left-handed guard from The Patrick School (N.J.) visited Minnesota in June and enjoyed it.

“The campus was great, the facilities was nice even though it was getting worked on, it was real nice and the weather was good, too,” McBrayer told SNY.tv then. “You hear a lot about Minnesota, you think it’s cold, but it was real hot out there….You thinking of cold all the way.” To read more of this story, click here

Kevin Dorsey to Minnesota

While coaches across America are out recruiting, Minnesota has landed a pledge.

Kevin Dorsey, a 5-foot-11, 180-pound point guard from Waldorf (MD) Paul VI Catholic, committed to Minnesota Saturday over Maryland and Nebraska.

Dorsey is the No. 17-rated point guard in the Class of 2015, according to 247Sports.com’s composite rankings.

‘Kevin brings pure speed and toughness and plays fearlessly,” Paul VI coach Glen Farello told SNY.tv. “He is explosive and competes every possession.” To read more of this story, click here

Bakary Konate Commits to Minnesota; Darrick Wood to DePaul (UPDATED)

Photo via 247sports.com

Photo via 247sports.com


Special to ZAGSBLOG

Sunrise Christian Prep center Bakary Konate committed to the University of Minnesota on Wednesday to become their fifth commitment to play under coach Richard Pitino next season.

Konate’s Sunrise Christian Prep coach, Luke Barnwell, offered his take to SNY.tv on what Konate will bring to the Golden Gophers next season.

“He’s a legit 6-11 guy,” he said. “He’s very long, a defensive presence at the rim and a pretty good shot blocker. He moves pretty well and gets up and down the floor. He’s fairly skilled and can make perimeter shots for a big guy. He will be a defensive presence right away at Minnesota, but offensively, he may need to develop a little bit more.” To read more of this story, click here

NIT Final Pits Former Knicks Coach (Brown) Against Son of Former Knicks Coach (Pitino)

LarryBrownSMUNEW YORK — Thursday’s NIT championship game will pit one former Knicks coach against the son of another former Knicks coach.

Larry Brown vs. Richard Pitino on the Madison Square Garden floor.

And Rick Pitino will be sitting behind his son’s bench when Minnesota (24-13) faces SMU (27-9) at 7 p.m. Thursday on ESPN.

“I know they got the Knick dressing room, so what does that tell you?” Brown joked Wednesday on a conference call.

Brown coached the Knicks for one ill-fated season in 2005-6, while the elder Pitino led the Knicks from 1987-89. To read more of this story, click here