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Pitino Adds Three to FIU Roster
          Release: 05/16/2012
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MIAMI (May 16, 2012) - FIU Head Coach Richard Pitino announced on Wednesday the addition of Jerome Frink (Jersey City, N.J.), Malik Smith (Boston, Mass.) and Ivan Jurkovic (Zagreb, Croatia) to the men's basketball program.

Frink is a 6-foot-7, 190-pound, forward, who was a major contributor for St. Anthony's (N.J.) during the last two seasons in which the Friars went 65-0 with consecutive NJSIAA Tournament of Champion titles and one national championship. Frink is rated the No. 8 player in the state of New Jersey (ESPN). During his senior year, he averaged 10 points and 5.8 rebounds to go along with averages of 16 points and six rebounds in the New Jersey State tournament, earning him Star-Ledger First Team All-State accolades. During his junior year, Frink averaged 10.3 points-per-game on 58.2 percent shooting. He also grabbed 177 rebounds and recorded 25 blocked shots.

"We are very excited about the addition of Jerome Frink," Pitino said. "Jerome has won on a very high level. Anytime you can get somebody who has played under a legendary coach like Bob Hurley, you know what you are getting. Jerome is a winner and will be a valuable addition to our roster."

Smith comes to FIU from Jacksonville College (Texas), where he earned all-region and all-conference honors with the Jaguars this past season, averaging 13.8 points and 3.2 rebounds. Prior to his stint with Jacksonville College, Smith spent one season with South Plains College, averaging five points in 27 games played. The 6-foot-2 shooting guard is a product of Boston, Mass., where he averaged 16 points, four assists and five rebounds with Notre Dame Prep. Before Notre Dame Prep, Smith attended Madison Park High School, leading the Cardinals to a 19-2 record, while leading the state in scoring with 26.6 points-per-game.

"Malik was one of the best shooters in the junior college ranks this past year," Pitino said. "He provides necessary outside shooting. We believe that he will be able to contribute right away."

Jurkovic is a 7-foot, 265-pound center, who comes to FIU after spending one season at Lon Morris College (Jacksonville, Texas) where he appeared in 28 games, averaging 4.9 points-per-game and 3.2 rebounds-per-contest. Prior to his stint with the Bearcats, Jurkovic played one season at Three Rivers Community College (Poplar Bluff, Mo.). He appeared in nine contests for the Raiders, averaging 5.3 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocks. He graduated high school from 1 Tehnicka Skola Tesla (Zagreb, Croatia).

"Ivan provides us with the front-court depth that we need," Pitino said. "He is a very hard worker. Ivan will bring toughness and physicality to our program."

Frink, Smith and Jurkovic join Dee Lewis and Tymell Murphy to comprise the 2012 signing class.

For more information on the FIU men's basketball program, log onto Fans can also follow the Panther basketball team on Twitter (@FIUMensBBall).

About FIU Athletics: FIU Athletics is home to more than 400 student-athletes in 18 different sports, and is a proud member of the Sun Belt Conference and an affiliate member of Conference USA (men's soccer). Athletic events are played in seven different venues on FIU's campuses (Modesto A. Maidique and Biscayne Bay), including U.S. Century Bank Arena and Alfonso Field at FIU Stadium.

About FIU: Florida International University is recognized as a Carnegie engaged university. Its colleges and schools offer more than 180 bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs in fields such as engineering, international relations, architecture, law and medicine. As one of South Florida's anchor institutions, FIU is Worlds Ahead in its local and global engagement, finding solutions to the most challenging problems of our time. FIU emphasizes research as a major component of its mission. It has 160,000 alumni and enrolls 48,000 students in two campuses and three centers including FIU Downtown on Brickell and the Miami Beach Urban Studios. FIU is a member of the Sun Belt Conference and has 400 student-athletes participating in 18 sports. For more information about FIU, visit

Jerome Frink (above), Malik Smith and Ivan Jurkovic to play for FIU beginning this fall
Jerome Frink (above), Malik Smith and Ivan Jurkovic to play for FIU beginning this fall

Courtesy: Jason Bernstein
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