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Chart: A look at the next Gophers men's basketball team

  • April 30, 2014 - 10:44 PM

A sneak peek at Richard Pitino’s second Gophers men’s basketball team:

Backcourt

Andre Hollins, sr.

Nate Mason, fr.

DeAndre Mathieu, sr.

Daquein McNeil, so.

Carlos Morris, jr.

About the backcourt: The Gophers return plenty of talent and potential at the point guard and shooting guard spots with seniors Mathieu and Hollins returning — the latter with a solid junior campaign despite an ankle injury that left him off balance for the second half of the year and the former transforming himself into the team’s most valuable player after transferring from junior college. Junior college transfer Morris should contend for the small forward spot, while McNeil and Mason add depth in reserve. Lofton, a transfer from Illinois State, will have to sit out the season per NCAA rules. All other guards are expected to contribute to a squad that lost Austin Hollins, Maverick Ahanmisi and Malik Smith.

Frontcourt

Charles Buggs, so.

Elliott Eliason, sr.

Gaston Diedhiou, fr.

Joey King, jr.

Bakary Konate, fr.

Josh Martin, fr.

Mo Walker, sr.

About the frontcourt: The Gophers add substantial depth and size to a group that loses only Oto Osenieks from the NIT championship team. One season after looking as if it would need to scrape together the entire frontcourt, they can call the center spot (seniors Eliason and Walker plus newcomer Konate) a strength while holding an array of options at power forward. By the end of last season, King — the only returnee at power forward with notable experience — was starting and playing as well as he has in his career. This fall, he will get plenty of competition from Martin, Diedhiou and potentially Buggs.

Amelia Rayno

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