Asked what he might try to confuse a Minnesota team coached by the son who knows him well, Rick Pitino worked hard to keep a straight face. “We’ve never played a triangle-and-two (defense), he will not be ready for it,” the Hall of Fame coach at Louisville said as Richard Pitino smiled while sitting beside him. “Their backcourt is something that must be stopped and it’s something that I’m going to try for the first time in my coaching career.”
Junior guard Zach Lofton has been dismissed from the Minnesota basketball program. Coach Richard Pitino said Wednesday that Lofton was dismissed for “failing to meet the expectations and obligations of the team.” The dismissal is effective immediately. Pitino calls the decision difficult but says it was in the team’s best interest “to move forward at this time.”
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Minnesota wants to follow up its 2018 Super Bowl host duties with an NCAA men’s basketball Final Four in 2019 or 2010. State, business and sports leaders led appeared Tuesday with Gov. Mark Dayton to describe their push for college basketball’s biggest weekend.
Don Meyer, one of the winningest coaches in college basketball who came back from a near-fatal car accident and liver cancer before closing out his career, died Sunday in South Dakota. He was 69.
Young scored 20 points for Kentucky last night, twice as many as the next highest-scoring Wildcat, in a 60-54 loss to Connecticut. This was Young’s ninth 20-plus point game and he led Kentucky with 17 in the Final Four win over Wisconsin.
The wildest NCAA Tournament of the modern era culminates with an 8 seed versus a 7 seed for the championship. Kentucky, a 74-73 winner over Wisconsin on Saturday, will face Connecticut, which upset Florida 64-53.
Faithful Bucky Badger fans filled the 508 Bar in downtown Minneapolis Saturday night to watch the team in the Final Four. The whole place was packed with Wisconsin fans all day. “I just want it so badly that it’s terrifying to think that it’s so close but it’s going to be a big battle,” Wisconsin fan Greta Hughes said.
Calipari embraces the sordid system, uses it, and dominates. He doesn’t pretend he’s taking kids for the leafy campus life, for the diploma that will never arrive, or even for a few classes. He wants talent. And talent he gets. And talented he is.
Austin Hollins hit a tiebreaking 3-pointer with 46.1 seconds left and Minnesota won the NIT championship Thursday night, beating SMU 65-63 to give the Pitino family its latest postseason tournament title. Hollins scored 19 points and Andre Hollins had 14 for the Golden Gophers (25-13), who took home the trophy for the third time. They also won the National Invitation Tournament in 1993 and ’98, though the second one was vacated because of an NCAA rules violation involving player eligibility.
The Huskies were punished for the mistakes made by players over the four previous years. While five players left the program, others remained loyal to UConn.
On Friday, after Iowa State had cut a 17-point deficit to four with two minutes left, Boatright made what his coach called the play of the game.
By far the most unlikely Sweet 16 matchup is Dayton-Stanford. The 11 seed Flyers started Thursday’s madness by beating Ohio State 60-59.
David from Eagan asked: Who picks the 68 teams in the tournament?
Among his fellow Connecticut Huskies, he ranks second in scoring, rebounding, and blocks. Playing alongside Shabazz Napier, he can go unnoticed.
A great weekend of hoops culminated in Sunday’s selection show. With the field set, the real madness can begin.
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Austin Hollins scored 18 points, Deandre Mathieu added 13 and Andre Hollins hit a late 3-pointer Thursday to give Minnesota a badly needed 63-56 win over Penn State in the Big Ten tournament. The seventh-seeded Golden Gophers (20-12) advanced to Friday night’s quarterfinal against No. 12 Wisconsin with their third win in four games. 10th-seeded Penn State (15-17) had a miserable night shooting, making only 32.2 percent from the field. D.J. Newbill had 16 points and senior Tim Frazier added 11. Penn State heads home from Indianapolis after losing for the third time in four games.
Andujar is a 6’6”, 205-pound point forward. He can handle the ball like a guard and draw bigger defenders out of the lane.
In the major conferences, Florida completed an undefeated regular season in the SEC and Cincinnati and Louisville tied atop the American.
Billy Baron, the MAAC Player of the Year, played in the ACC and Atlantic-10 before coming to Canisius, giving him a better perspective than most on the quality of play across conferences.
Iona and Manhattan, two schools separated by fewer than 10 miles, will play for the MAAC championship in Springfield, MA.
The 5’11” Tharpe is averaging 30 minutes, 8.9 points, and 5.1 assists per game while shooting 45 percent from the field, 39 percent from deep, and 82 percent from the line.
The Big Ten’s Freshman of the Year last season is averaging 17.9 points per game (second in the conference), 4.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and two steals for the 22-6 Spartans.
Sam Thompson scored 16 of his 19 points in the second half, leading No. 24 Ohio State back from a 12-point deficit to a 64-46 victory over Minnesota on Saturday night. The Buckeyes outscored the Golden Gophers 46-18 in the second half. Lenzelle Smith Jr. added 13 points and Shannon Scott 10 for the Buckeyes (22-6, 9-6 Big Ten), who trailed by 10 at the half and by 12 early in the second half before taking control with a 17-0 run.