Gophers put walk-on Jackson Purcell on full scholarship at team softball game

Gophers guard Jackson Purcell was given the 13th and final scholarship for the 2023-24 season at a team softball game on Wednesday. (University of Minnesota Athletics)

The University of Minnesota men’s basketball team ended their summer workout program on Wednesday by splitting up into two teams and playing a fun game of softball on campus.

Jackson Purcell, a redshirt sophomore out of Apple Valley, walked up to the plate for an at bat that he’ll likely remember the rest of his life. With Director of Basketball Operations Ryan Livingston at the microphone, he announced Purcell as the 13th and final scholarship player for the Gophers in the 2023-24 season.

He was mobbed by his teammates at home plate after the news became official. He then went onto belt an inside-the-park home run, and said, "All day!" after crossing home plate.

Purcell came to Minnesota as a freshman walk-on in 2021-22, but missed the entire season due to injury. He made his Gophers’ debut last season against St. Francis-Brooklyn. A finance major at the Carlson School of Management, Purcell also earned Academic All-Big Ten honors last season.

It’s the second straight year coach Ben Johnson has granted a scholarship to walk-on. Last year, it was Will Ramberg.

The Gophers are now off until they return to campus at the end of August and start practices for the 2023-24 season in September.