Gopher Basketball now 12th in AP Poll; HUGE Test vs Wednesday

Golden Gopher Basketball moved up two spots in this week’s AP Top 25. The rankings, released on Monday, have MN as the 12th best team in the country. The University of Miami (FL) currently sits a couple of spots ahead of us (10th). As part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, Miami travels to the Twin Cities on Wednesday to face Richard Pitino’s Gopher squad.

I could (maybe already have) stare(d) at the above list for hours. There isn’t a big difference from last week’s version. Texas A&M is the only school to jump over the Gophers. The Aggies, previously 16th, are now considered a Top Ten team. Arizona took the biggest “L”. After three straight losses, the formerly 2nd ranked Wildcats, fell out of the top 25. Minnesota also climbed over North Carolina and USC.

We’re moving on up in this world! We are just one of two Big Ten programs to make the cut. Anytime you’re alone in a category with Tom Izzo’s team, that’s a positive, right? We beat Alabama A&M, UMass, and Alabama last week. Minnesota only has two contests over the upcoming seven days. Outside of the mentioned Miami battle, Big Ten play opens vs. Rutgers on Sunday.

If it wasn’t for the 5 vs. 3 outlier that was the Bama game, MN might be ranked higher. On the other hand, beating Alabama A&M and UMass is nothing to write home about. Regardless, if they win the next two, it’s almost certain they’ll be TOP TEN next Monday.

Let’s take a quick look at this 5-0 Miami team. Screw Rutgers. I’m already chalking that up as a win. They may be undefeated, but who the hell have they beat:

The 10th ranked Hurricanes are coached by Jim Larrañaga. After 271 career wins at George Mason, Larrañaga is now in his sixth season at Miami. As for the team itself, no player averages more than 13.4 PPG. The fact that they have NINE players averaging more than 6.8 PPG shows their depth. Sophomore G Bruce Brown Jr.’s 8.6 RPG and 5.4 APG is rare in college basketball. Keep you’re eyes on Brown. The 6’5″ stud is expected to be a first-round pick in next years NBA Draft.

But, Brown isn’t his conference’s reigning three-time player of the week. That’s right. Jordan Murphy did it again! BIG TEN PLAYER OF WEEK. He is now the first Gopher in history to win that award three consecutive times. That’s history, baby.


10 Miami @ 12 Minnesota: Wednesday, 11/29. (8:15 CST. ESPN2)

Johnny Minnesota @mnsportsnstuff
Minnesota Sports Fan

Photo: AP Photo/John Autey (Edited by Eric)

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