McNeil Following Pitino to Minnesota
There was never any question about which coach Daquein McNeil wanted to play for in college.
He committed to head coach Richard Pitino and Florida International back in the fall after being recruited hard by both Pitino and assistant coach Kimani Young.
With Pitino recently being named the new head coach at Minnesota, and Young set to join him, there was no doubt that McNeil would want to follow suit.
On Tuesday, after FIU had officially hired Pitino’s replacement, former Norfolk State head coach Anthony Evans, McNeil requested his release according to Vermont Academy head coach Jesse Bopp.
By Wednesday morning, McNeil had already made a verbal commitment to join Pitino and Young at Minnesota.
“This was a decision [Daquein] made based on Coach Pitino, Coach Young and a chance to compete for Big 10 and national championships with people he believes in,” Bopp said.
McNeil, originally from the Baltimore area, has spent the last three years at Vermont Academy and has been at the forefront of their rise up the prep school rankings in recent years.
He starred with Baltimore Elite on the EYBL and AAU circuits and is known for his ability to make plays with the ball in his hands. That playmaking ability will be well utilized at Minnesota as he’ll be able to provide minutes at either backcourt position.
McNeil is the first player to commit to Pitino at Minnesota.