Gophers recruit Johnson not medically cleared to play basketball

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The Minnesota Gophers men's basketball team has lost one of its top recruits for the upcoming season. DeLaSalle standout and Gophers recruit Jarvis Johnson will not be medically cleared to play for the team in the upcoming season.

The news was announced Monday in a statement from Johnson's family and Gophers men's basketball coach Richard Pitino.

According to the Pioneer Press, Johnson survived a heart attack while collapsing during a game in the eighth grade.

The 6-foot-1, 185-pound guard was a starter on four straight state championship teams at DeLaSalle and became a highly touted recruit.

According to the Associated Press, Johnson was diagnosed with a disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. It causes excessive thickening of the muscle of the heart making it harder to pump blood. He had a defibrillator implanted in his chest, which allowed Johnson to return to the court.

FOX Sports North notes that he was a three-star recruit and had offers from several schools including Wisconsin, Michigan State and Iowa State in addition to Minnesota.

The team did not say if Johnson could be medically cleared to play in the future, but he will accept his basketball scholarship to the university and will remain a part of the basketball program.

"Coach Pitino and his staff are looking forward to having Jarvis on campus, where he will get an outstanding college education while supporting the team in any way he can," the statement said. "Jarvis has dreamed of being a part of the Gopher basketball family; and we are happy he will be."

He was one of seven recruits that Pitino attracted to join the Gophers program this season. The others arrived on campus this week.

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