Just a few notes from tonight’s Gophers media access:
• The Gophers coaching staff will likely make a decision on whether to redshirt freshman Wally Ellenson before tomorrow night’s game, Tubby Smith said tonight. Smith sat down and discussed the options with Ellenson today, he said, but wants to speak with his family before announcing anything.
• Smith again reiterated tonight one of the reasons he likes Trevor Mbakwe coming off the bench for the Gophers. “We can go to the bench and actually maybe elevate our play when you bring in a Trevor or you bring in a Julian Welch, because they’re both veteran, physical players,” Smith said. “That’s a real benefit for us, and that’s our strength right now – we have to play to our strength.”
• Rodney Williams on the team’s ascent to No. 13 in the AP poll, which is where they landed today (one up from last week): “It’s definitely a good feeling. We know how good that we are and now other people are starting to notice it, so it’s definitely a good feeling.”
• Williams said he doesn’t know when scouts are in the stands watching him play – and he’d like to keep it that way. “I’ve heard, the coaches have told me afterward that there were people in the stands, but I don’t want to go out there with that on my mind because then I probably won’t play to my potential. I just want to go out there with a free mind, just go out there and play and have fun.