Utah picked up a commitment from an intriguing Austrian 7-footer on Friday as the school announced that center Jakob Poeltl signed his Letter of Intent for the 2014-15 season.
Poeltl also took visits to Arizona and Cal and shot nearly 75 percent from the field while averaged 12.7 points, 7.7 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game for the Arkadia Traiskirchen Lions of the top Austrian domestic league, the Bundesliga.
“We are really excited to have Jakob join our program as he will give us versatility at the power forward and center positions,” Utah head coach Larry Krystkowiak said in the release. “He is committed to coming here and maximizing his basketball potential. Over the past year he has been playing against men so he is a little more seasoned as far as level of competition. Adding Jakob, a coveted big man, to our mix of international players, is something we feel is a blueprint to success in the Pac-12.”
Kyle Goon of the Salt Lake Tribune also spoke with Jakob about traveling 5,500 miles from home to play college basketball.
“I heard they used to be a pretty good college for basketball, but they’ve had a drought.” Poeltl told The Salt Lake Tribune. “Hopefully I can help them go back to the tournament. It would be good for the whole college.”
Poeltl has been very successful as a youth player in Austria so it’ll be interesting to see how he acclimates to the American game. Poeltl joins a good Utah class that includes wing Brekkot Chapman, forward Kyle Kuzema, point guard Isaiah Wright and junior college small forward Chris Reyes.