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Center Jacob Larsen leaves Gonzaga basketball team to focus on school

UPDATED: Sat., Oct. 6, 2018, 7:50 p.m.

Gonzaga center Jacob Larsen  tries to control a rebound during the first half against Portland on Jan. 11. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
Gonzaga center Jacob Larsen tries to control a rebound during the first half against Portland on Jan. 11. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

Jacob Larsen is no longer on the Gonzaga men’s basketball team.

Larsen, who saw limited minutes last season as a redshirt freshman, decided to quit playing basketball but will continue as a student at Gonzaga. He will remain on scholarship, school officials said.

“He’s not with our team right now,” coach Mark Few said following Kraziness in the Kennel on Saturday. “He has some things going on personally that he needs to address. We’re 100 percent behind him, helping him every which way we can.

“Hopefully, it’ll end up being a great story.”

The 6-foot-11 center from Denmark was expected to provide frontcourt depth. Gonzaga has one of the top frontcourts in the country with returners Rui Hachimura and Killian Tillie and San Jose State transfer Brandon Clarke, who sat out last season under NCAA transfer rules.

True freshman Filip Petrusev, a talented 6-11 forward from Serbia, has been impressive in early-season drills and will probably be the fourth big. Jeremy Jones, a 6-7 senior, is another option.

“It’s different without (Larsen), but we still have some good guys coming in,” Tillie said. “I’ve been really impressed with Filip in our practices. He’s making 3s, in the post he has to be a little more aggressive. He’s a big guy. He’s going to be really important for us.”

The Zags will be down to 11 available scholarship players, including Geno Crandall, presuming the North Dakota transfer becomes eligible in the next week or so.

Larsen made 65.5 percent of his shots while averaging 8.4 minutes in 34 appearances last season. He averaged 2.9 points and 2.7 rebounds with a season-high 14 points against Incarnate Word.

Larsen was sidelined as a true freshman after tearing his ACL in preseason practice.


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