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Freshman Jarvis Johnson’s heart issues cost him his Minnesota career

Jarvis Johnson, Malik Jones

AP Photo


Incoming freshman Jarvis Johnson will not be medically cleared to play for Minnesota this season, the school announced on Monday afternoon.

“Unfortunately, Jarvis Johnson will not be playing on our team this season,” head coach Richard Pitino said in a statement released by the program. “However, we are extremely excited that he has decided to accept his scholarship and pursue his undergraduate degree here at the U, where he will also remain a part of our program. Jarvis is a tremendous young man, and we support him and look forward to having him here.”

Johnson has an internal defibrillator implanted in his chest. He got the device after passing out during a practice when he was in eighth grade. Johnson’s heart stopped beating that day, for around 10 minutes, and it’s a minor miracle that his mind and body are fully functional, let alone that he was a three-star point guard recruit with multiple Big Ten offers.

“While we are extremely disappointed, the health and welfare of Jarvis is our highest priority,” the Johnson family said in the statement. “Coach Pitino and his staff are looking forward to having Jarvis on campus, where he will get an outstanding college education while supporting the team in any way he can.”

“Jarvis has dreamed of being a part of the Gopher basketball family, and we are happy that he will be.”