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Minnesota Basketball: Gopher Hoops gets 2021 commitment from center Kenny Pohto

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A Sunrise Academy big man has giving a verbal to Richard Pitino and the Gophers

NCAA Basketball: Minnesota at Indiana Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Over the weekend, Richard Pitino and staff received their second verbal commitment for the 2021 recruiting class. Another big man has committed to Minnesota, this one being Kenny Pohto, a Swedish native who is playing his high school basketball at Sunrise Christian Academy in Kansas.

Here is what we know about Pohto

Kenny Pohto

Pos: Center / PF
Ht: 6’10” (I’ve seen 6’9”, 6’10 and 6’11”)
Wt: 22-240
Other offers: Nebraska

In a nutshell, the big man from Sweden is coming to the Gophers as a guy who can rebound and shoot threes. Much more of a perimeter oriented big man on the offensive end, than a back to the basket kind of offensive weapon.

Watching his video below, I love how agile Pohto appears and his knack for spacing, finding the opening on the floor. He then keeps the ball high and explodes to the rim. You can also see that he is not at all afraid to set a perimeter screen, pop to an opening and quickly pull the trigger on open threes.

Pohto reportedly weights around 240 as he heads into his senior season of high school. That’s a really nice frame to go with his athleticism and soft hands.

How Does He Fit?

This is the second skilled big man added in this 2021 class. The good news is that big man depth really shouldn’t be a problem in the coming years. Pohto, Treyton Thompson and the 2020 addition of Martice Mitchell give this program three underclassmen who are 6’10” or taller. These incoming freshmen will essentially be replacing Eric Curry and Brandon Johnson, who will both be leaving the program.

That currently leaves 1 scholarship available for this 2021 class, likely going to a more a guard than a wing player. Another point is likely the most pressing need, but don’t be too surprised to see a shooter get signed and then wait and see what happens with Marcus Carr in the offseason.