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Gophers Look For Early Energy From Rice Lake Recruit

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Mike Max returned to WCCO-TV as a sports reporter and anchor in Apr...
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Gopher basketball team is looking for help this year, and they have someone lined up for next year who can hopefully give them a boost.

Rice Lake’s Wally Ellenson played at the Target Center this weekend, and Gopher’s head coach Tubby Smith watched him play Saturday.

Smith needs some high impact players that can work early in the game, and he may have found what he is looking for. Ellenson is tall, strong, and competitive.

“I can go inside and out,” Ellenson said. “I’ll dunk it, or hit the three. I’m just really all around.”

Ellenson will play for the Gophers next year. And the Gophers are hoping he will fit with their offense.

Kevin Orr, Ellenson’s coach at Rice Lake, said the future Gopher has a lot going for him.

“He can shoot the ball. He can handle the ball,” Orr said. “I think he is going to get stronger … when he gets there.”

When asked what he will bring to the Gophers, Ellenson’s first word was: Hustle.

“Diving for balls, scrapping for balls,” he said.

Ellenson comes from a basketball family. His father played college ball and his two younger brothers both start on their high school team.

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