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Former Gator Pitchford headed to Nebraska

NCAA Basketball Tournament - Practice Round - Omaha

OMAHA, NE - MARCH 15: Walter Pitchford #35 of the Florida Gators dunks the ball during practice as they prepare to the Virginia Cavaliers in the second round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at CenturyLink Center on March 15, 2012 in Omaha, Nebraska. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

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According to the Omaha World-Herald, Walter Pitchford is transferring to Nebraska.

That’s welcome news for a Husker program that has often struggled to find quality big men. Pitchford is 6'10", 221 lbs., and he’s joining a team that will be losing two post players a year from now. He’ll be a prime option for the Big Red after sitting out a transfer season. Pitchford may apply for a hardship waiver and step in right away, however. According to an April story in the Orlando Sentinel, Pitchford is transferring closer to home to be near his ailing grandfather. Per Google Maps, Lincoln is over 700 miles from East Lansing, Michigan, so it’ll be interesting to see if the NCAA buys into that logic.

The Omaha newspaper reported that Pitchford committed Saturday morning on a visit to Lincoln. That leaves new Husker head coach Tim Miles with one scholarship left to give.

It’s hard to know exactly what Pitchford will bring to Nebraska, since he only played one season on a loaded team, but the newspaper summed up what is currently known about the new Husker:

Pitchford played just 22 minutes in 13 games last season, scoring six points and grabbing four rebounds. At prep school in East Lansing, Mich., Pitchford averaged 17.4 points, 9.5 rebounds and 4.5 blocks.

If Pitchford is able to gain a waiver, the Huskers will look a great deal more like their Big Ten brethren. 6'11" Jorge Brian Diaz and 6'10" Brandon Ubel will be seniors next season, and Pitchford could provide a legit third big man with a little built-in experience.