Tag Archives: Andre Hollins

The Sad Tale of the 2014-15 Gophers

Ordinarily the season wrap-ups on our blog come in early April. That’s because March Madness is done and the Gophers’ postseason activities generally come to an end late in the month. This year we can do it a little earlier. I guess I’m not really sure where to start. In short, this was one of the most unexciting, dispassionate and lifeless seasons I’ve been a part of. It was hard to watch, and even harder to write about. We should have known something was off…

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The Gophers are getting better, and so is their non-conference season.

Just a few weeks ago, the Golden Gophers lost to St. John’s, after dominating the first three quarters of the game. The season looked over at that point. The Red Storm looked awful, and the Gophers looked worse. Flash forward to the present, and it is a whole new world. Ken Pomeroy’s computers are spitting out an 11-7 Big Ten record, which would be a tie for third in the Big Ten, and have the Gophers ranked 23rd in the country. The decidedly more human folks at CBS Sports have the Gophers ranked 24th. St. John’s, which looked awful, actually has one of the best defenses in the country, and is ranked 26th by KenPom, 13th by CBS Sports, 20th by the AP, and 23rd by the coaches. Georgia, which seemed just as bad as the Gophers, if not worse, has an RPI in the top 50, and in terms of RPI, Minnesota’s win over the Bulldogs is the Big Ten’s 8th best win this season. Combined with no horrible losses, which are mounting around the Big Ten, and the non-conference season is going well. However, I’m not convinced that the people who declared the Gophers to be terrible after the St. John’s game are wrong. The Gophers are just getting better…

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What to watch while the Gophers are winning.

The competitive portion of the non-conference Golden Gopher basketball season is over. The Gophers have four weeks and six games to prepare themselves for the Big Ten season. Thanks to wins over Georgia and Wake Forest, the Gophers should still have a reasonable chance to make the NCAA tournament with a 9-9 or 10-8 conference record, if they can improve enough to do so.

The next six games aren’t about the Gophers opponents at all. If any of the opponents are competitive, and if a game is ever in doubt, something has been horrible. Western Carolina, Friday’s opponent, is the best of a group of bad teams, and they already have losses to Charleston Southern and East Tennessee State, this season. The next six games are all about the Gophers solidifying their strengths, fixing or at least hiding their weaknesses, and solidifying line-ups.

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52-point second half keys true road win for Gophers

For the first 20 minutes of Minnesota’s portion of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge it looked like the same under-achieving team that had somehow become the new normal was once again taking the floor. With faulty ballhandling and an inability to maintain momentum, the Gophers looked just as lost in the half-court offense as they had in both games out in New York City. But behind a raucous 2nd half that saw 52 points and hot shooting from Andre Hollins, the Gophers jumped out to a…

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Pitiful second half dooms Gophers in NIT Tip-Off

Things were looking pretty rosy for the Gophers at halftime against St. John’s. They had just cruised to a 40-31 lead behind some nifty passing and a performance by Nate Mason that is short-listed for “Half of the Year” so far. And with the Red Storm struggling to put together any sort of organized rebuttal, it looked like a sure victory for Minnesota if they could just continue to hit St. John’s in its weak spots. Maybe it was harder than it looked. The Gophers…

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Some answers, new questions for the Gophers after first four games

Settling on assumptions only four games into the season is a dangerous game to play. With the ebb and flow of teams, in-season player growth and the evolution of a team’s identity, the November Golden Gophers will assuredly look different than the March version. That said, it’s four games in and we’re already starting to see some patterns, which can answer some initial questions we had about the team. But along with those answers come plenty of questions. Since we last checked in, the Gophers have…

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Gophers roll Western Kentucky in home opener

Four days after being punished by Louisville in an airport hangar on national TV, the Gophers were back in Williams Arena for their season home opener, facing Western Kentucky in what was officially the opening round of the NIT Season Tip-Off. Unlike the hangar slop fest, the Gophers were much more in control and confident. And behind a strong all-around performance by Deandre Mathieu and defensive domination, the Gophers took down the Hilltoppers with ease 76-54. Defensively, it was night and day for the Gophers,…

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6 things I’m watching for when the Gophers face Louisville

So it begins. We’ve seen one live exhibition and one intra-squad scrimmage, and heard from second and third-hand sources about another. What do we know about this year’s Gopher team? Well, not much. Andre Hollins is healthy, I guess. That’s about all we know. And that’s why the season opening game against Louisville is so simultaneously frightening and exciting. The Gophers return almost everybody important, which bodes well for continuity. And from what we’ve seen, most guys have matured and expanded their game. But that’s…

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Gophers rip Minnesota-Duluth in not-secret exhibition

The not-secret portion of Minnesota’s preseason schedule kicked off Thursday night against Minnesota-Duluth. Usually reserved as a hockey rivalry, the Bulldogs probably wished the game was held on ice, as it would have mitigated the talent gap between the two teams. While the Gophers have had close calls with D-II teams in the past,  UMD was no match, falling easily 95-68. Five players scored in double figures. Exhibition games, though, aren’t about the end result, but rather a glimpse at what we we might see…

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The Gophers will be short-handed in last chance tune-up.

There is a non-hockey game between the Golden Gophers and Minnesota-Duluth on Thursday. The exhibition game, which tips off at 7 pm at The Barn, will be the last and only chance to see the Gophers play against a team other than themselves before the season starts.

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