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Reports: Gonzaga makes late addition to frontcourt with Serbian forward Pavle Stosic

Another reinforcement appears to be on the way for Gonzaga’s frontcourt less than two months before the start of the 2023-24 college basketball season.

Pavle Stosic, a 6-foot-9 forward from Serbia, committed to the Bulldogs over the weekend and already appears to be on the Spokane campus, according to a photo from the Instagram account of new Gonzaga assistant coach RJay Barsh.

Stosic, who recently played for Anagan Olivar Zaragoza of the Spanish Liga EBA, shared a selfie initially posted by Barsh on Sunday. The photo of Stosic and Barsh was taken inside a car, with a caption “Follow Your Dreams” written by the GU assistant, a Serbian flag and Gonzaga University as the tagged location.

European sports website MaxBet Sport posted a story on Sunday also reporting that the 19-year-old had chosen to pursue a career at Gonzaga.

Stosic was quoted in the article, which was written in Serbian, and described his reason for switching course after originally planning to resume his playing career in Spain.

Google’s translation service interpreted Stosic’s quote as such: “I was pleasantly surprised by Gonzaga’s offer, I did not think that I would change in the middle of this summer. A good opportunity opened up for me to finish my studies and improve in basketball at one of the strongest colleges. I hope that as a ‘freshman’ I will get the opportunity to show what I know.”

Also a member of Serbia’s youth national teams, Stosic averaged 9.0 points and 5.2 rebounds across 10 games for Zaragoza last season. According to Euro Basket, he made 60% of his 2-point shots and 13% on 3-pointers.

Stosic, a native of Nish, Serbia, also played a handful of games for CB Peñas Huesca, averaging only 3.4 points per game while playing 16 minutes per game in 16 appearances for the club.

While representing his nation at the 2021 FIBA U18 European Challengers event, Stosic averaged 6.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.4 assists while averaging 20 minutes per game. Serbia went 4-1 at the event, only losing to Spain.

Stosic went through Real Madrid’s youth system, at one point teaming up with Florida State sophomore Baba Miller, a former Gonzaga target who took an official visit to Spokane before ultimately signing with the Seminoles. Barsh, who replaced Roger Powell on Mark Few’s coaching staff this offseason, was a member of the Florida State coaching staff that recruited Miller, who’s now being considered a potential NBA Draft pick in 2024.

Gonzaga’s yet to formally announced the addition of Stosic, but he’ll fill one of three available scholarships and help the Bulldogs improve their depth in the frontcourt after Alex Toohey and Marcus Adams Jr. decommitted from the Bulldogs at different points this summer.

Stosic, who’s set to become Gonzaga’s first Serbian player since Filip Petrusev, will also be one of three foreign-born players on the Bulldogs’ 2023-24 roster, joining South Korean forward Jun Seok Yeo and Croatian guard Luka Krajnovic.

Finding a spot in GU’s frontcourt rotation will prove to be an uphill battle for Stosic with the Bulldogs returning starting forward Anton Watson and Ben Gregg, who was the first forward off the bench a year ago. Additionally, Gonzaga added Wyoming transfer Graham Ike, who should have an upperhand at earning a starting spot, and also bring back redshirt freshman Braden Huff and Yeo.