Gophers coach Ben Johnson likely made the last addition to his 2022-23 men's basketball team Thursday with the official signing of Dartmouth transfer Taurus Samuels.
Samuels, a 6-foot-1 senior guard, is the third transfer to sign with the Gophers this spring and the seventh newcomer to join the team.
"It means a ton to be a Gopher now," said Samuels, who committed Monday. "It's an exciting opportunity for me."
Johnson's only returning starter is leading scorer and rebounder Jamison Battle, so the competition will be fierce this summer to determine the U's best five and rotation for next season.
Starting 23 games and averaging 9.4 points for Dartmouth last season, Samuels brings much-needed experience and depth to Minnesota's backcourt, which will be entirely new.
"I'm excited about the level of experience, leadership and versatility he brings to the guard position," Johnson said Thursday in a statement. "Taurus has great skills to play on and off the ball and give us good depth in our backcourt."
The Gophers are not expected to use their last two scholarships for next season after adding Samuels, Morehead State guard Ta'Lon Cooper, and North Carolina big man Dawson Garcia from the transfer portal this spring.
Cooper and Garcia are likely starters with Battle, but the rest of Johnson's lineup seems wide open with the Gophers opening summer practice early next month. Here's a crack at Johnson's early starters.
GOPHERS 2022-23 EARLY PROJECTED STARTING LINEUP
Guard – Ta'Lon Cooper 6-4 junior
Guard – Braeden Carrington 6-4 freshman
Forward – Jamison Battle 6-7 junior
Forward – Dawson Garcia 6-11 junior
Forward – Pharrel Payne 6-9 freshman
OTHERS IN THE MIX
Guard – Taurus Samuels 6-1 senior
Forward – Parker Fox 6-8 junior
Forward – Isaiah Ihnen 6-9 junior
Guard/Forward – Jaden Henley 6-7 freshman
Forward – Joshua Ola-Joseph 6-7 freshman
Forward/Center – Treyton Thompson 7-0 sophomore
*Returning players in bold