It is always a pleasant surprise when a boring non-conference game is not only interesting, but worth talking about for days (years?) to come.
- Blake Hoffarber set a school record with 8 three pointers, and scored 26 points on 11 shots in only 22 minutes. He made four threes in a row in the first half, and made the last three after rolling his ankle. On top of that he led the team in rebounding with six and had four assists. Yes, the Gophers were playing Northern Illinois and I am fully aware that Northern Illinois is not a good team, but this isn’t the first game against a bad team in the 24 years since the advent of the three point line, and no Gopher has ever done what Hoffarber did tonight…. in 22 minutes.
- Rodney Williams missed the game with an ankle injury. He dressed and was available in case he was needed, but this was a laugher before the whistle blew.
- Bryant Allen, the punt returner for the football team, sat on the bench tonight. He came to the Gophers hoping to play both football and basketball, but with the time commitment necessary for that, there was some question if he would drop basketball. This seems like a signal that he still intends to play, and having a three point shooting guard with excellent speed to come off the bench, and not use a scholarship, never hurt anyone.
- For the second time this season the Gophers shot better than 80% from the free throw line. They were 8-10 tonight. They made a season high 93% against Stephen F. Austin
- Tubby’s line shifts are infuriating. I am all for bench players getting as much playing time as possible, but it would be nice if he played line-ups that we will see once the conference season rolls around. The second group does not function well at all, and sucks any interest out of what are usually mind numbing games.
- The Gophers held Northern Illinois to 2-20 three point shooting, and this wasn’t their worst shooting game of the season. They are fresh off a 1-20 game against Bradley and opened the season with a slightly better 2-18 performance against Northwestern. They have attempted at least 18 three pointers in every game this season. At least they are committed?
- The Gophers recorded assists on 70.6% of their field goals. Tonight marked the fourth time this season that the Gophers exceeded 70%.