There hasn’t been a whole lot of recruiting news for Minnesota recently but the Golden Gophers have announced a new addition to the program in Louisville transfer Matz Stockman.
Golden Gophers head coach Richard Pitino announced on Wednesday that Stockman will transfer to Minnesota after he completes his spring semester at Louisville. The 7-foot junior center will sit out next season and have one year of eligibility remaining for the 2018-19 season.
“I am very excited about the addition of Matz Stockman,” Pitino said in a statement. “I believe Matz will come in and contribute immediately. He’s got the size and skill to make an impact in the Big Ten. He will be a terrific addition on the court, in the locker room, on campus and in the classroom.”
Stockman was used in a reserve role with Louisville, who is coached by Richard Pitino’s father Rick Pitino, during his three seasons with the Cardinals. Stockman appeared in 45 games while in a Cardinals’ uniform, averaging 2.2 points, 1.6 rebounds and 5.3 minutes played per game. Stockman experienced his most success during his sophomore season where he played six-plus minutes per game and averaged nearly three points per game.
"I've had a great time at Louisville the last three years," Stockman said in a statement. "I've learned a lot, gotten to know a great many people and have become very close with our coaches and players. I'm incredibly grateful for my time here. I've improved a lot since I first arrived on campus and I will be forever grateful to Coach (Rick) Pitino, the coaching staff and for everyone involved around our team. However, I've been looking for an opportunity to play quality minutes for a long time now and I think this will be a great situation for me."
The numbers might not suggest it but the addition of Stockman could prove to be vital for the Golden Gophers during the 2018-19 season. Stockman has obvious size at 7-foot-0 and 240 pounds, and will have a year to develop within the Golden Gophers’ program.
Stockman will also have the opportunity to pick up a number of minutes as the Golden Gophers will lose three key big men after next season: Reggie Lynch, Bokary Konate and Gaston Diedhiou. As of right now there would be three big men on the roster besides Stockman in 2018-19, including Eric Curry, Jordan Murphy and Daniel Oturu. However, Stockman would have the most size of the group by far.
Overall this isn’t the flashiest story but is a positive thing for the future of the Minnesota Golden Gophers. It certainly won’t hurt to throw a 7-footer out on the floor and he’ll add depth to an area that will need it after it loses so much to graduation after next year.