gophers men’s gameday
NOON VS. PENN STATE • WILLIAMS ARENA • BTN, 1500-AM
Minnesota (17-13, 6-11 Big Ten): After a 76-63 home loss to No. 6 Wisconsin on Thursday, the Gophers need to beat Penn State to clinch a single bye in the Big Ten tournament. The Gophers, who will be honoring their five seniors — centers Mo Walker and Elliott Eliason, guards Andre Hollins and DeAndre Mathieu and walk-on Kendall Shell — lost to Penn State on Jan. 8 in State College. After trailing by as many as 13 in that one, the Gophers turned the ball over three times in the last 47 seconds and fell 63-58. The Nittany Lions have only swept the Gophers once in series history, in 2011. … Hollins, who has 1,739 points with the Gophers, needs 38 points to tie Randy Breuer for third all-time in program history. … The Gophers have played their home finale against Penn State in each of the past three years.
Penn State (15-15, 3-14): The Nittany Lions threatened to turn around their recent luck against Ohio State on Wednesday, leading by as many as nine in the first half, but the No. 23 Buckeyes rebounded for a 77-67 victory, and Penn State has now lost six in a row. DJ Newbill, who leads the Big Ten in scoring with 20.3 points per game, put up 17 in that one, easing him past the 2,000 career points mark (one of only 10 active players to do so). Chaska’s Ross Travis also matched a season-high 14 points in that one and added eight rebounds. … Penn State has held opponents below their scoring average in 12 of 17 Big Ten games.