Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Welcome aboard, Michael Hurt!

Richard Pitino and the Gophers secured their first 2016 commitment recently with Rochester forward Michael Hurt signing on.  Hurt may not have the greatest offer list right now (Gophers, Davidson, Northern Iowa, Nebraska, Northwestern, and assorted other mid-majors) but the ratings sights like him quite a bit.  247sports has him as the #155 player in the class and #27 power forward, while ESPN has him all the way up at the #59 overall player and #15 power forward.  Likely as time went on Hurt's offers would get more impressive and rumors were Wisconsin and Oregon were sniffing around so locking up the home state kid early a great move by Pitino.

Hurt is a tweener forward, but in this case it sounds like that's a positive.  Rather than being too slow to go up against small fowards and too small to go against power forwards, Hurt sounds like he's too quick for small forwards to handle and too big for small forwards and I really hope that sentence made sense.  He's said to have an outstanding jump shot with a chance to be one of the best shooters in the class and to be a good enough ball handler where he could do a little bit of a point forward thing if needed.  Scouting reports also say he can score well both in transition and the half court, with or without the ball (cutting and such, obviously you can't score without the ball), and when he's the focal point of the defense he's adept and finding open teammates and is a good passer.

Well then.  This sounds pretty good.  The only weaknesses I could find listed by anyone are he needs size to go against college PFs (not a surprise for a high school kid) and he could be a more aggressive rebounder (and this can be taught).

All-in-all, a very good first pick up for 2016 for the team, and someone with a little bit of size as well which is still looking like a possible future issue.  I don't know if Hurt will be able to play PF right away when he gets on campus, but I know he'll be able to shoot and should be a capable player right off the bat.  Good start.  Oh, and he's lefty, so we'll get to look at that sweet, sweet lefty J.  Looking forward to it.

As for tonight's game the Gophers are terrible.  Nebraska 70, Minnesota 56.

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