The Gophers lost their fifth player in nearly a year when junior center Colton Iverson was granted a release from his scholarship earlier this week.

Iverson confirmed late Friday he was released from his scholarship.

"I just want to say that my experience at the U has been great, but my family and I have decided that it is best for me to move on," he said in a statement. "Minnesota is a proud program, and I wish them the best of luck in the future."

The Gophers coaching staff asked Iverson to reconsider before releasing him, according to Iverson's former AAU coach Lance Friese.  

Based on the conditions of his release, Iverson can't transfer to another Big Ten school or to a program that the Gophers face next season.

If he transfers to a Division I school, he'll have to sit out for year but he'll be eligible to play during the 2012-13 season.

"It was a little bit of a process, it took about a week," Friesen said. "They asked him to think it over."

Iverson earned All-Big Ten tournament honors last year but averaged 5.4 points and 5.0 rebounds in 18.3 minutes during the 2010-11 season.


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