Skip to main content

Pitino: New facilities will help keep in-state recruits home

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Minnesotans have heard it before and they'll hear it again, but Richard Pitino is latest head coach to say it's time to close the borders in a fight for in-state basketball recruits.

Last year, Minnesota saw the four best players in the state pack their bags and leave for outside schools.

Pitino said watching Jones excel in the Final Four was national proof that Minnesota produces elite-level basketball talent, and he believes some of that talent will be more likely to choose the Gophers once the University has better practice facilities.

"It doesn't make me excited when they're doing it for other teams," Pitino told Marcus Fuller of the Pioneer Press. "There is good talent (in Minnesota). We certainly need to put up a fence around the borders, but I think one of the keys, and I don't talk about facilities a whole lot, but when we build the practice facility and upgrade everything, it makes a bigger impact locally than nationally. Guys locally will see we're committed to it, and that's very, very important."

U of M Athletics Director Norwood Teague, in early March, said fundraising for a new Athletic Village is progressing well. Read more and view updated images here.

According to ESPN (Insider only), Pitino's 2015 recruiting class is ranked 36th in the country. It's highlighted by three 4-star recruits, including ESPN's third-best recruit in Minnesota, DeLaSalle's Jarvis Johnson.

ESPN lists former Grand Rapids forward Alex Illikainen as Minnesota's top recruit for the Class of 2015. Illikainen, a Wisconsin Badger recruit, just won the National Prep Championship at Brewster Academy. The No. 2 recruit is DeLaSalle's Sacar Anim, a Marquette recruit.

This embed is invalid

Next Up


Charges: Armed man made death threats at Minneapolis LGBTQ bar

The man allegedly used derogatory terms while threatening to kill someone.


FDA pulls last COVID-19 monoclonal antibody treatment as new variants rise

A therapy used to treat more than 11,000 Minnesotans is no longer authorized amid a surge in the latest COVID-19 variants.

Austin Robert LeClaire

Charges: Plymouth man shot girlfriend in head after birthday party

The 23-year-old victim is in critical condition as of Friday.


State announces $2.5M in grants for child care providers

Child care providers in roughly a dozen communities will receive funds to help grow the supply of affordable, quality child care.


Probe of Golden Valley police uncovers racism, alleged misconduct

One officer was terminated for alleged racist comments and violations of state law.

blowing snow

Blowing snow Friday in Minnesota; will it snow next week?

Winds could gust up to 50 mph Friday afternoon and night.

Deer hunting blaze orange

To combat CWD, late-season deer hunting announced for 9 areas of MN

The special hunts will be held between Dec. 16 and 18.


COVID levels rising in wastewater; BQ.1 now dominant

BQ.1 is the new dominant subvariant in Twin Cities wastewater.

Screen Shot 2022-12-02 at 11.43.05 AM

Keith Ellison, other AGs settle with CarMax over recall disclosures

As part of the settlement, CarMax now must disclosure open recalls online and on the lot.

police lights squad car

Man kidnaps 2-year-old daughter in St. Paul, crashes after pursuit in Minneapolis

The incident involved both police departments in Minneapolis and St. Paul.

police lights

Boys aged 15, 16 arrested after shooting of teen in Woodbury

The victim suffered non-life-threatening gunshot wounds.