Ben Johnson has secured his third commitment to the 2022 class and it another rising local player. Josh Ola-Joseph, from Osseo, is a very athletic wing who is going to play for the Gophers next fall.
High School: Osseo
Ola-Joseph, much like Pharrel Payne, is a kid who really saw his recruitment stock rise over the summer. Considering the past year was incredibly challenging from the standpoint of recruiting and evaluating high school players, the summer of 2021 was really important for coaches and evaluators to really see who belongs playing at the top levels.
Ola-Joseph had himself a really nice summer, going from zero offers from high majors to earning a Gopher scholarship offer as well as offers from Clemson and Texas A&M.
What he is going to bring to the Gophers is a really nice skill set that is highlighted by extreme athleticism (a reported 40” vertical). A long wing-span to go with a quick first step and a desire to play defense. I believe that a comparison to Damian Johnson, with more offensive skills coming into the program, is a very fair one.
He played this summer on D1 Minnesota, a team that had a ton of talent on it. And plays his high school ball for Osseo. Looking forward to watching Park Center and Osseo play this season (Braden Carrington vs. Ola-Joseph).
The 2022 Class
The Gopher class is starting to take shape. Coach Johnson now has his SG, SF and PF/C locked in. This class very much is shaping up to look like the 2018 class that included Daniel Oturu, Gabe Kalscheur and Jarvis Omersa. An shot-blocking big man, a shooter who plays defense and an athletic forward (although this has some offense skills).
So what is next?
Well Johnson absolutely needs to land a point guard in this class. Tre Holloman has committed to Michigan State so the staff needs to go to the next tier of point guards on their list. Jayden Pierre, from Long Island, is visiting in September and is considered a strong possibility for the Gophers to land.
The program would potentially still have 5 more scholarships available for next year. But I would expect that they will bring in 1 or 2 more true freshmen and then use the remaining scholarships for a graduate transfer or a traditional transfer to balance out the classes on the roster. Adding a freshman PG and then a transfer PG would seem very likely. Additional big men in this class, most likely as a transfer, would also be very welcomed.
Same dunk, different perspective.