Keanu Pinder, the first and only current member of Nebraska’s 2015 men’s basketball recruiting class, will have to wait another year to join the Huskers.
Kyle Linsted, who coached Pinder this season at Sunrise Christian Academy in suburban Wichita, Kan., said Wednesday that Pinder will spend the next two seasons playing at a junior college.
“Academically, he needs it to qualify,” Linsted said.
Pinder, from Perth, Australia, originally was a 2014 recruit who had planned on spending another year in Sunrise Christian Academy’s postgraduate program and reclassifying as a 2015 recruit.
Pinder would have had four years of eligibility if he’d joined Nebraska in 2015, when he will turn 20. Now, he’ll have two years to play at the Division I level after playing two years in junior college.
Nebraska remains very interested in Pinder and will place him in a junior college with the intent of signing him thereafter, according to a source familiar with Pinder’s recruitment.
Pinder, who unofficially visited Nebraska on Sept. 21, gave his commitment to Nebraska in October, turning down offers from Auburn, New Mexico and Saint Mary’s. Indiana and Louisville also were beginning to show interest.
Pinder played last summer on the Australian U19 team, then moved to the United States. He’s the son of former North Carolina State player Kendal Pinder, a fifth-round pick in the 1979 NBA Draft who also played for the Harlem Globetrotters.
Kendal Pinder was a professional teammate of current Nebraska assistant coach Chris Harriman, who’s the lead recruiter on Pinder.