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'U' signs Osenieks to letter of intent

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The Minnesota men's basketball team has signed 6-foot-8 forward Oto Osenieks to a national letter of intent for next season.

The signing was announced on Wednesday.

Other scholarship newcomers joining Osenieks with the Gophers in the fall are center Elliott Eliason, shooting guard Austin Hollins and center Maurice Walker.

Osenieks (OCEAN'-ix) can play both the small forward and power forward positions. Coach Tubby Smith says he is a "very mature player" who "will add a great amount of flavor to our program."

Osenieks averaged 16 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists as a senior this year at Brehm Prep school in Carbondale, Ill. He is a native of Riga, Latvia, who played for the Latvian national team in the 18-and-under European championships in 2008.