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Scott M

Gopher Mens Hoops

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Scott M

Rivalsdotcom listed Minnesota as the #62 team in the country, citing a down year in the Big Ten, returning seniors and Tubby Smith to get things rolling. The guy knows defense and if they can defend in his style they can win.

My take on the whole thing is the way the Sports Scene is in Minnesota right now, this guy can be the toast of town. Vikings and Wolves stink, Twins will have the same faces with some of the better talent potentially gone, Brewster is off to a horrible start with Mason's players, Wild will be a 5-8 playoff seed...If the Gopher men can win and win right away with an easy schedule and a weak big ten this year, he might run this town.

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RankOfEagle

Yea, I'm really looking forward to this year. Normally I wouldn't be so much but like you said, who else is there to believe in right now? I would like to see the barn get rocking again....that place is one of the most exciting and loud places when packed. I go to quite a few games and a few times I've went to some good games where the atmostphere was amazing. Hopefully Tubby will get the program turned around.....

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Scott M

Nobody else has much enthusiasm. That's okay. When they last made the dance with Vinny Grier they were expected to be horrible also.

Has anyone seen their schedule? Besides UNLV and FSU(minus Thornton), they really don't play anyone until the Big Ten Season. They could be entering Big Ten play with ten wins. Go 9-7 or 10-6 in the conference, win the first game of the Big Ten tourney, and they're on the bubble. Do better and you're in.

They can win on defense and scrappiness. I think Tubby will get them turned around. I'll go out on a limb and say that they will be one of the last teams to make the NCAA tourney.

This could all change if I watch them play a couple games and they get wiped by SW New Mexico Blind Academy. grin.gif

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maros91

I think I heard awhile ago they got a top recruit. Someone can help me out on this. I think maybe from South Dakota.

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Scott M

Colton Iverson from Yankton. This kid got some interest from a lot of schools, Florida visited him in August. 6'10", 210 low post scorer.

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maros91

Thats the guy. Hopefully we can land a couple more.

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Willy

Tubby landed a Juco small forward that is supposed to be a top 25 juco player. Devron Bostick. Should be good. He is getting some of his guys in here already. I am excited to see what he can do.

There is nothing better than a full barn and a game against Wisky or Iowa when it matters.

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Northlander

Take half the gophers track and football teams and they would give the basketball team all they can handle. No matter who the coach is they have a long long road ahead of them. Maybe 3 wins in the big 10.

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Scott M

Things have been pretty quiet at the barn. While Brewster is busy running his mouth about Rose Bowls and little green men (and is one Miami of Ohio missed field goal away from 0-fer), Tubby is staying pretty quiet. It's probably a good approach. Quietly working his guys, getting them adjusted and prepared to be winners. You have to walk the walk before you can talk the talk kind of mentality. I will probably miss the season opener (2nd weekend of rifle deer), but I'm going to buy season tix. I can still see this team being on the bubble at the end of the year.

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Willy

Just landed Sampson the III. He is a big man listed as a top 75 player nationally.

I just read an article that had us listed as the #7 recriuting class in the nation for 2008.

Tubby is already making his prescense known. Guess those folks that thought he couldn't recruit are eating their hats now. It will be a fast turnaround.

Bring back the barn stormers and it is about time to get that old place back to the best arena in the country. It is fun when after a game your ears are ringing, there isn't a louder venue in this state and I myself cannot wait to see what these new kids and coach have!

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Scott M

Abu-Shamala cut his hand washing dishes. 6 stitches. He's out for Friday's exhibition game. Ryan Saunders is also banged up and won't play. Brandon Smith also announced he's leaving the program. Good timing Brandon, a good coach comes along and you decide he's not worth your time and you'll take your 3.8 points and 2.2 rebounds elsewhere. I'd bet he was getting flack for not following rules (like last year when he was suspended) or something and decided it would be easier to walk. Oh well, bring on Mankato State.

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Willy

Big deal, that just opens up more schollies.

The way Tubby has been recruiting, all those guys can walk as far as I'm concerned. None of them are anything other than a 7 player at best, lets get some more top guns in here and start talking BT championships, not bubble bursts and NIT bids. It is time to turn the corner. The people of MN deserve it.

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Scott M

Myron Medcalf has some excellent questions he's blogged about over at Star Tribune going into Saturday's season opener versus Army:

Tubby Smith is seeking some answers to a lot of questions. I have a few of my own:

1. Will the real point guard please stand up? Al Nolen, Kevin Payton and Lawrence McKenzie have been used at the point during the preseason. But tonight, we might get a better feel for who should be the point guard of this team going forward. Based on conversations with Smith, I think he’s open to a lot of possibilities.

2. What will the Big Three do this year? Spencer Tollackson, Dan Coleman and McKenzie should be one of the highest scoring trios in the Big Ten this year. Their consistency and productivity will make or break this squad. They’ll have to get going early in every game because this is a team that has had some trouble maintaining momentum during close games.

3. Who’s ready to step up off the bench? Every non-starter on this team will have an opportunity to compete this season. The Gophers have 10 players suiting up for tonight’s game. And Smith expects reserve players to have an impact off the bench. Blake Hoffarber, Nolen, Travis Busch and Jon Williams will definitely get big minutes.

4. How will this team handle adversity? Brandon Smith left the team Wednesday. Jamal Abu-Shamala’s out with a freak injury. And the Gophers have had to learn Smith’s offensive and defensive systems within a few weeks.

5. How bad does this team want to win? The Gophers lost 22 games last season. They were at the bottom of the Big Ten. But the good news is that they lost a lot of a close games. Check game film from the home matchup against Ohio State last season, and you’ll notice that the Gophers played well until they lost the little momentum they had built up early on. Good teams win close games. McKenzie said that failure to play tough in close games cost the Gophers last season. I suspect that they’ll have to win some tight ones this year, too.

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schweady

1-0.

I tried to watch the video streaming of game on bigtennetwork's website, but experienced more than the ordinary bandwidth frustrations. Radio stations were either too weak to hold up here in this AM no man's land or they were broadcasting football, of all things. I know it's an early season blowout game, but it's really frustrating to be shut out by this whole Big Ten Network fiasco when things seem like they could turn around a bit this year. It's the Victory Sports lunacy deja vu all over again.

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Scott M

Signing day starts tomorrow and the period runs through Nov. 21. Tubby's 08 class should be top 3 in the Big Ten, maybe ranked in top 50 nationally.

More commitments over the last few weeks.

I overheard a radio guy say that the 5 frosh that he's about to sign can outplay his 5 starters this year. Will be a fun team to watch if the players match the hype!

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Scott M

Tubby got a letter of intent today from Devoe Joseph from Ohio. The 6'3" Shooting Guard is ranked in the mid-20's nationally for SGs and within the top 100 overall and is a 4 star recruit.

A very nice addition. If Tubby gets a true PG, he will have recruited a 3 star or better recruit in all positions 1-5!

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ozzie

I think Joseph is from ontario canada.......but this gives a solid core to build around!!

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Scott M

Yeah, he plays in Canada.. He is listed as an *Ontario* player.

I'm heading to the game tonight....if I can find my tickets. frown.gif

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Pointer_Pride

Recruiting sites list him as going to high school just outside of Toronto.

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schweady

3-0 for the first time in 5 years. Thanks, Tubby.

Still frustrated with this whole big ten network fiasco. Tuesday night they're finally on ESPN2.

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Scott M

I did manage to get to the game. Sloppy all around.

Way too many fouls and turnovers. Central Michigan couldn't handle the press and turned it over just a few more times than the gophs. MN got to the charity stripe a lot more in the 2nd half than C.M. did.

Nobody was impressive. But a win is a win. Paul Carter was at the game since Missouri State was playing MCTC.

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schweady

da_chise--

We were in Mpls for the weekend and thought about finding tickets for the game, but best the gopher office could do was Sec 201 Row 13. Curious what the new scalping law has done to ticket availability around game time. Maybe you didn't notice any last night, but anybody able to chime in on whether any good lower level seats are being resold out on the street?? There were 6 of us, so we really didn't want to chance the drive over from the western burbs and wind up disappointed.

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Scott M

Dunno about lower level but I saw lots of tickets changing hands outside of Williams. Saw some guy buy a $30 ticket for $20.

I also overheard a guy buying a couple tickets in separate locations and saying "I'll meet you in 104" to his buddies. I've seen people move around and the ushers aren't too picky. That changes when they play a bigger opponent. 6 people is a lot though Schweady, so you probably made the right call.

That was just an observation in passing. Attendance was pretty good but the game was so sloppy and uninspired the crowd never really got into it. That's when those games are the best, when the barn is just rockin.

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james_walleye

I've read in 3 places now that the recruiting class coming in next year is anywhere from #6-10 nationally. Not too shabby! Just proves a good coach can recruit basketball in MN. The barn is a great selling tool. Just sitting here watching the gophers against FSU. Just took the lead at 17-16. This would be a nice win on the road. FSU is a solid ACC team with eyes on March.

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schweady

Lucky to be this close at the half. Too many 3 pt tries, sloppy play underneath, little to no half court discipline. The second half will hopefully show us what a difference Tubby's presence makes. Travel back one year and this is an obvious Munson blowout loss.

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