Mbakwe reinstated, won’t go to trial

Gophers forward Trevor Mbakwe battles for a rebound at the Howard Pulley Pro Summer League in St. Paul.

Mark Vancleave

Gophers forward Trevor Mbakwe battles for a rebound at the Howard Pulley Pro Summer League in St. Paul.

Trevor Born

After more than a year of delays, Trevor Mbakwe’s trial won’t get started after all. The Miami-Dade Attorney’s Office announced today that the Gophers baskteball player agreed to take part in a pre-trial intervention program which, if he successfully completes it, means the pending assault case against him won’t go to trial. The agreement is not an admission of guilt. Athletic director Joel Maturi subsequently announced that Mbakwe, who was held out of playing last season due to the case, will be immediately reinstated to the team and eligible to practice with the Gophers Aug. 21 when they begin preparations for their September tour through Canada. Mbakwe will need to do 100 hours of community service, donate $100 to a center for abuse victims in Florida and stay away from the woman who accused him of assault in April 2009. Mbakwe requested, and was granted, release from his scholarship in May in order to explore transfer options, with Memphis often reported as his top choice. Head coach Tubby Smith is out of town, but will meet with Mbakwe and discuss the 6-foot-8 forward’s future with the team upon his return, according to the team. âÄúThis process has been difficult and I am relieved it is finally being resolved,âÄù Maturi said in a release. âÄúItâÄôs now time to move on and I am glad that he is going to have an opportunity to be a member of our basketball program with two years of eligibility remaining.âÄù