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Scott M

2010-2011 Gophers

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Scott M

I caught part of the Nike Hoops Summit a few days ago and saw Cory Joseph play. He'd look nice in maroon and gold. Also heard the Gophers got a verbal commit from Mo Walker, a 3 star recruit, 6'10" 300 pound Canadian dude. Hopefully he can slim down. Nebraska center Elliot Elliason and Tennessee shooting guard Austin Hollins are signed up, but many are saying these two will redshirt in 2010-2011.

One of my favorite players, Paul Carter, is transferring out of the U to play somewhere closer to home (Chicago) where his sister is dealing with treatment of her cancer. This frees up a scholarship but takes away a player that is a well suited to play Tubby-style basketball. He was a leader, didn't grumble over an odd substitution pattern and coming off the bench, played a useful role as a sub, grabbed rebounds, hit 3's and open 2's, and was long and athletic enough to cause problems in a press or zone.

Last year's recap to follow and a look at the 2010-2011 roster.

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Dotch

Bummer about Carter. Not a devastating blow but always liked his demeanor and the intensity he played with on both ends of the floor. Hopefully they can find someone to fill his shoes. The rumblings of Cory Joseph possibly coming here have been around a while and hopefully they come true. The finish to their season and the fact they beat several of the teams in the tournament can't hurt.

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CJH

It would be a good "get" to sign Joseph. Start him at the point, but Devoe at the 2, Hoff at the 3, Sampson at the 4 and Iverson at the 5. Have to think that would be a pretty competitive lineup.

Interesting how Tubby is recruiting a bunch of big guys who don't really fit into a pressing style of game. Maybe he is changing his ways and realizing he needs to beef up for the Big Ten (ala Iverson at the end of the seaon and the preseason Tourney)?

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SkunkedAgain

Carter was a good player, but he only smelled the salt once the Big 10 tournament rolled around, same as Iverson. Iverson has much more talent and potential. Tubby can find another Paul Carter in terms of talent, maybe not in personality though...good kid.

Everything that I've heard is that Cory Joseph is a long shot, so I'm not holding my breath. I'll be elated if he comes though.

I was so sick of Westbrook and his antics though. I really think that the team will play better without him. I won't take anything away from his scoring ability. His attitude was a cancer to the team, penchant for angry feuds with opposing players, and desire to make every layup from 10 feet away...I can do without all of those.

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hamrej23

I would be very surprised if we don't get Cory Joseph after his brother is here and after his best friend just committed to the U.

I think if you add Royce White and Mbakwe that we would have a top 5 recruiting class in the country - no doubt about it.

Eliason and the other previous recruit are going to have to red shirt if this happens.

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Coach1310

Joseph would be a HUGE signing.... I think if he wad dead set on coming here, we would know already. I have this fear that he "thinks" he should come to MN and play with Devoe and his buddy, BUT can see the bright lights of a bigger program and will probably end up there.

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Scott M

Maurice Walker, 6'10", 270# New Hampshire Center ranked #12 center by Rivals, and Canadian buddy of C. Joseph.

We'll see what happens. Scuttlebutt is Texas and Villanova are the front runners on Joseph.

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Scott M

Cooter, look what I found for you: GHSig-2.jpg

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Coach1310

Well... even if we don't get Joseph.... I like the look of that collage there Scott!

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CJH

3-0 is pretty interesting, considering the Badgers have been a much better team!!

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Scott M

Last week the Gopher signed another frontcourt player. Oto Osenieks, a 6'8" 205# Latvian power forward. He's a face up shooter that could give the Gophers a chance to throw a different look at defenses (assuming they can work a, gasp, different type of offense that accentuates his skills).

Cory Joseph is going to Texas. Can't say I blame him. If he wants to play pro, he needs to get up and down somewhere and get some exposure. Tubby was probably his own worse enemy, despite doing some hard recruiting for the kid for the last couple years and reaching out to the Joseph family, his TERRIBLE half court game told the kid all he needed to know. There is no signature offense with Tubby and that's how he loses the big recruits. Those kids want to showcase their skills somewhere where they will be maximized, not grind out 20-25 minutes per guy to do a half court weave for 31 seconds of shot clock and watch someone try to score off the dribble for the last 4.

Pick these up at your local video store's free box:

BD-02949.JPG

BD-02307.JPG

BD-1057.JPG

Curious to see if Justin Cobbs is going to leave. There were some rumors swirling mid-season, but now CJ isn't coming here, Nolen needs to get eligible...there are some minutes available. There is also a scholarship available. Too bad White couldn't screw his head on straight.

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Coach1310

I couldn't help but chuckle with your last post Scott.... you sound just like my Dad!! He wants someone to break down what % the Gophers score after the shot clock hits 20.....

I can't blame Joseph. Like you mentioned the grinder style, lack of minutes and terrible offense aren't really what blue chippers are looking for.

As far as Cobbs... I can take it or leave it with him. If he leaves and Nolen isn't eligible, that just means more minutes for Joseph and I'm okay with that.... He makes plenty of mistakes, but he has no problem making a big play or taking a big shot. I am almost hoping the Goph's aren't quite as deep, just to give some guys more minutes...

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Scott M

Read a couple rumors yesterday about a couple other teams entering the Big Ten...Rutgers, Pitt, Syracuse, Nebraska, and Missouri. I would take the last two and go after Iowa State, then you'd have a region specific conference with an even number of teams.

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CJH

From what I have read, other than Notre Dame, they want to spread East, so they spread out more geographically and get into the larger populations, then split up into two divisions (East & West).

I think Syracuse would be a good get, but I doubt they would leave the Big East. I would be happy with Pitt, Missouri, Nebraska however.

Also heard Royce and Tubby talked last week and Royce admitted he screwed up and acted contrite. There would be several hurdles to him rejoining the team, however. I guess we'll see if anything develops further........

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Scott M

Ladies and gentleman, Maverick Ahanmisi...we got him.

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Deitz Dittrich

who is he?

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Harmonica Bear

Gophers Sign Maverick Ahanmisi

By U of M Athletic Communications, Special to GopherIllustrated.com

May 11, 6:28 pm EDT

Buzz up! 1 PrintThe Minnesota men’s basketball program today announced the signing of Maverick Ahanmisi (a-hawn-ME-see) to a National Letter of Intent. Ahanmisi will be eligible to compete during the 2010-11 season, joining fall signees Elliott Eliason (Chadron, Neb.) and Austin Hollins (Memphis, Tenn.) and fellow spring signees Oto Osenieks (Riga, Latvia) and Maurice Walker (Scarborough, Ontario).

“Maverick is a very good shooter from the perimeter and will help us by stretching the defense,” said Gopher Head Coach Tubby Smith. “He is a year older and more experienced having played in prep school this past season. He will balance this year’s recruiting class that already includes two post players, a forward and a wing. We welcome him to the Golden Gopher family.”

Ahanmisi averaged 20.0 points this season at Stoneridge Prep in Simi Valley, Calif. A 6-2 senior guard, Ahanmisi originally attended and graduated from Golden Valley High School in Santa Clarita, Calif. Ahanmisi averaged 12.5 points as a sophomore, 15.8 points as a junior and 20.2 points as a senior and finished his scholastic career as the all-time leading scorer and three-point shooter at GVHS. He also maintained a 3.5 grade point average.

The Gophers wrapped up the 2009-10 with a loss to Xavier on Mar. 19 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. This was the second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance for the Gophers and the 16th overall appearance for a Tubby Smith-led team.

The Gophers finished 21-14 on the season, the 17th-straight season a Tubby Smith-led team reached the 20-win plateau. It is the longest active streak in the nation and the third-longest streak in NCAA history. Minnesota reached 20 total wins for just the 10th time in school history.

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Scott M

Justin Cobbs made it official. He's tranfering to Cal. Surprise, surprise, his reason for leaving was offense.

"Coach wanted to slow it down," Cobbs said. "In high school, it was more of an up-and-down [system]. When he talked to me [during recruiting], he told me things were going to speed up."

Cobbs added later: "I felt a little limited -- not saying Coach Smith limited me, he has a good strategy, he's won championships. .... But for me to fit in, I felt it was a little different because I'm more of a scoring guard."

Two scholarships are now open. There is some concern about Mbakwe leaving as well; his trail may get delayed again and Joel Maturi confirmed that Mbakwe has considered the idea of transferring.

This is what the Kentucky people warned us about...Tubby gets a good recruiting class (Class of '08), then takes a year or two off or the recruits don't pan out. Meanwhile kids don't like the offense and leave.

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Scott M

Royce White is going to Iowa State and coach Fred Hoiberg, pending an okay from the NCAA:

White leaving U, heads to Iowa State

by Myron Medcalf, Star Tribune

After a troubled one-season tenure with the Gophers, Royce White considered turning pro, returning to school at Minnesota or transferring to another school.

He decided Monday to move on.

The state's 2009 Mr. Basketball signed to play for Iowa State, a program led by former Minnesota Timberwolves vice president of basketball operations Fred Hoiberg.

"I think altogether it's a great move for me and I'm hoping to prove that it was a great move for Iowa [state] as well," White told reporters during a Monday teleconference.

White never played a minute for the Gophers, despite being one of the nation's top recruits during a high school career that began at DeLaSalle, where he was expelled for academic misconduct as a junior, and ended at Hopkins, where he helped win a state 4A title in 2009.

Gophers coach Tubby Smith secured a verbal commitment from White during his first season with the program. But the player Smith has called the greatest rebounder he's ever recruited never suited up for the Gophers because of legal trouble. Smith was unavailable for comment Monday.

White pled guilty to misdemeanor theft and disorderly conduct after an October incident at the Mall of America. Smith suspended White indefinitely as a result.

In November, university police questioned White during the investigation of a dormitory laptop theft. White ultimately pled guilty to trespassing in that case, maintaining his innocence of the theft charges.

White released a YouTube video in December expressing his frustration with his ongoing suspension, while announcing that he'd decided to quit Gophers basketball. He was academically ineligible when he withdrew from school in February, having failed to attend any of his second semester classes.

Despite the turbulent start to White's collegiate career, Hoiberg said he's confident White will live up to expectations.

"I am aware of Royce's situation at Minnesota," Hoiberg said in a school release. "I have talked with a lot of people who are close to him, spoken with Royce in person multiple times and feel he is sincerely committed to meeting the expectations we have for our players. On one of his campus visits, Royce also met with institutional staff both inside and outside of the athletics department and he left very positive impressions on everyone."

Without an NCAA waiver, however, White won't be able to play next season. Because he's academically ineligible, he cannot receive an athletic scholarship from a Division I school during the fall semester, according to Gophers compliance director J.T. Bruett.

NCAA rules prohibit a player from regaining his eligibility through summer courses. He'll also need an NCAA waiver to avoid the transfer rule that requires him to sit for a season before he can play.

"That's something we need to sit down as a team and try and figure out, me and the compliance people at Iowa State," White said during the conference call. "I'm just hoping that the NCAA will find that my circumstances were special and they'll let me move forward with my career."

If he's forced to sit, White said he will stay with the Cyclones, who have also signed former Robbinsdale Cooper forward Calvin Godfrey, a Star Tribune All-Metro third team selection last season.

"I want to be a pro one day, that's been my goal since I starting playing the game," he said. "And I think Iowa State has a great platform for that. But I'm not too ambitious, I'm not looking to the future. ... I'm looking forward to getting to Iowa State and meshing with my teammates well and making a run at Big 12 championships and the rest of the goals we want to get to as a team."

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Coach1310

Good luck to him.... however if he gets a waiver from the NCAA it will be a joke. All of his circumstances are self inflicted. It's a bummer it didn't work out, but he seems relatively fragile upstairs so I don't forsee him being the player he once could have been.

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zepman

He's got Europe written all over him.

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CJH

He's got all the talent in the world, but can't keep his priorities straight. Disappointed it didn't work out at the U. So far, Tubby's two big recruits (MBawke) haven't played for him......we could have done some damage last year with either of those guys.

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Coach1310

A little birdie chirped the other day that Imbakwe or however you spell it is probably going to Memphis... looks like his old community college coach is now an assistant there and he probably won't have the suspension hang up... if this happens, I have to say I am a bit dissappointed in the U.... it is gonna be tough to ever be a Big Ten contender if all the big fish get away!!

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zepman

Most people release diseased fish anyway!!

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Coach1310

Most people release diseased fish anyway!!

I hear what you are saying, BUT we will never be a contender with just the squeaky clean kids we can recruit.... we are gonna have to take on some baggage and the U seems determined not to...

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CJH

The U takes on at risk kids all the time in there regular college, athletics should not be held to a higher standard. The coaches are paid to win games and bring in revenue, period.

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Scott M

FYI Mbakwe's trial has been delayed twice this summer, once by the prosecution and another time by the judge for a conference. If it's delayed again, Maturi may let him play as he isn't getting his right to a speedy trial.

Nonconference schedule has been released!

November 2 Northeastern State (Exh)

November 8 Winona State (Exh)

November 12 Wofford College

November 15 Sienna College

November 18‐21 Puerto Rico Tip‐off

November 18 Western Kentucky

November 19 Hofstra/North Carolina

November 21 TBD (P.R. Tip-off)

November 24 North Dakota State

November 29 Virginia (Big Ten/ACC Challenge)

December 4 Cornell

December 8 at St. Joseph’s

December 11 Eastern Kentucky

December 15 Akron

I like it better than last years. They will get enough RPI boosters from that group; Wofford, Siena, and Cornell all went to the Big Dance, Virginia is a power conference team, and the Puerto Rico Tip-off should provide some lift from three teams. The conference race is going to be tight again. I guess I see Tubby stuck in the middle of the conference for a number of years unless he gets a big recruiting class or player development gets kicked up a few notches.

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CJH

Mbakwe says on his Facebook page he will play for Gophers

By Marcus Fuller on August 18, 2010 10:38 AM | 8 Comments | No TrackBacks

Gophers junior forward Trevor Mbakwe decided to give Minnesota sports fans even more good news after Vikings quarterback Brett Favre's return to town Tuesday.

Mbakwe said on his Facebook page: "It was tough but I guess if Brett Favre can make a comeback, I can give Gopher Nation 2 years they won't forget. Let's go boys!"

The 6-foot-8, 240-pound Mbakwe already met with Gophers coach Tubby Smith about returning, Smith told the Pioneer Press on Tuesday. And Smith expects Mbakwe to give them an immediate rebounding force.

I'm not sure Mbakwe should be a starter right away. He has to earn that honor, but it probably won't take long. Several players and coaches told me last season that Mbakwe was a dunking machine and dominated inside often in practice. He'll surely do the same once practice starts Monday for the Canada exhibition tour.

-- Now that Mbakwe's situation is settled, the Gophers have another big issue looming as practice begins next week.

Canadian doctors diagnosed junior guard Devoe Joseph with a strained quadriceps while he was playing for the Canada men's development team. He only played one game on the European tour and struggled. I've heard that his injury could be more serious and different than first thought, possibly a pre-existing knee injury that grew worse since the end of last season.

Joseph will likely miss the Canada trip, which is a shame since he's returning to his native country. But that is the least of the Gophers' worries. If he needs further medical attention, then will he be 100 percent healthy when camp begins in October?

-- There are 13 players expected right now to travel on Minnesota's foreign tour: Blake Hoffarber, Colton Iverson, Devoe Joseph, Trevor Mbakwe, Al Nolen, Ralph Sampson III, Rodney Williams, Mo Walker, Maverick Ahanmisi, Elliott Eliason, Austin Hollins, Dominique Dawson (walk-on) and Eric Stark (walk-on).

Freshman Gerald "Chip" Armelin and sophomore walk-on Bryant Allen are officially on the current 2010-11 roster, but won't make the trip. Armelin didn't attend summer school and Allen is a wide receiver on the football team. Freshman walk-on Chris Halvorsen is on the roster, but won't make the trip either.

-- The Gophers considered taking radio analyst and former Gophers player Spencer Tollackson with them to call the games and do interviews for the Web site. But I was told it was too expensive to add another person.

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Huskie

What happened to the post player that was coming from Chaldron Nebraska or is he in the next years recruiting class.

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Scott M

Elliot Eliason, he's making the trip. Thanks for the update CJH.

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