This is Amelia Rayno's third season on the Gophers men's basketball beat. She learned college basketball in North Carolina (Go Tar Heels!), where fanhood is not an option. In 2010, she joined the Star Tribune after graduating from Boston's Emerson College, which sadly had no exciting D-I college hoops to latch onto. Amelia has also worked on the sports desk at the Boston Globe and interned at the Detroit News.

  Follow Rayno on Twitter @AmeliaRayno

2015 shooting guard Kain Harris benefits from advice of an NBA veteran

Posted by: Amelia Rayno under College basketball, Gophers coaches, Gophers players Updated: June 5, 2014 - 11:25 AM

When Kain Harris thinks about how to step up his defense, find consistency in his jump shot or better convert in traffic, he simply picks up the phone and dials up a seasoned NBA veteran.

Luckily for the 2015 shooting guard, the person at the end of the other line often answers.

Current Memphis Grizzlies wing Tony Allen, who just so happens to be Harris’ cousin, has long acted as a role model for the 6-4 Chicagoan. Now, he’s a bit of a mentor as well.

Before games, Harris will call for advice. After, he’ll text for feedback. In the winter, the rising senior will watch the Grizzlies play on TV and then ask Allen, who just completed his tenth year in the league, about things he saw.

“I talk to him all the time,” Harris said. “He just tells me to keep working hard … I always like to watch him and see what I can learn from him and maybe I can put it in my game.”

He’s hoping the tutoring will help to give an extra boost to a recruitment that is burgeoning in the summer after his junior year.

Harris, an athlete that works well in the open floor, currently has collected offers from Creighton, Northern Illinois, DePaul, Bradley and South Carolina. Minnesota – specifically Gophers assistant Ben Johnson -- is pursuing the guard in a serious way, but hasn’t offered yet.

This summer he hopes to visit Creighton and would strongly consider making the trip back to Minnesota as well, should the offer arrive.

“They’ve got strong interest,” said Harris of Minnesota’s staff, which began communicating with him last summer. “I can’t do nothing but wait, just keep playing hard and keep getting better.”

On his end, the attraction is there. He kept tabs on the Gophers last year and watched as they claimed the NIT championship in New York.

“I like their system, I think I could fit well it in,” said Harris, who plays for Chicago-based Meanstreets on the AAU circuit. “It’s pretty free, they let you play. I like that a lot.”

In the meantime, Harris benefits from a mature and experienced voice, helping to keep the process in perspective and maintain the work ethic that will shine through. Even better, Allen has arranged for Harris to work out with one of the trainers who has helped him over the years.

“I just take advantage of it,” Harris said. “I’m not a finished product so I just keep working on my overall game.

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Philadelphia 1 Bottom 3rd Inning
Washington 1
Seattle 0 Top 4th Inning
Baltimore 1
Texas 0 Top 3rd Inning
Cleveland 1
Colorado 0 Top 4th Inning
Detroit 0
Cincinnati 0 Bottom 3rd Inning
Miami 0
San Francisco 2 Top 4th Inning
NY Mets 0
LA Angels 3 Bottom 2nd Inning
Tampa Bay 1
NY Yankees 0 Top 3rd Inning
Boston 0
Minnesota - L. Darnell 7:10 PM
Chicago WSox - C. Sale
Toronto - J. Happ 7:10 PM
Houston - C. McHugh
Milwaukee - W. Peralta 7:15 PM
St. Louis - A. Wainwright
Kansas City - J. Guthrie 8:35 PM
Oakland - S. Gray
Pittsburgh - E. Volquez 8:40 PM
Arizona - V. Nuno
Atlanta - M. Minor 9:10 PM
San Diego - E. Stults
Chicago Cubs - K. Hendricks 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - D. Haren
NY Giants 8/3/14 7:00 PM
Buffalo
Indianapolis 8/7/14 6:00 PM
NY Jets
San Francisco 8/7/14 6:30 PM
Baltimore
New England 8/7/14 6:30 PM
Washington
Cincinnati 8/7/14 7:00 PM
Kansas City
Seattle 8/7/14 8:00 PM
Denver
Dallas 8/7/14 9:00 PM
San Diego
Philadelphia 7:00 PM
Sporting Kansas City
Winnipeg 27 FINAL
Hamilton 26
Toronto 3 12:05
Montreal 5
Brt Columbia 9:00 PM
Calgary
Saskatchewan 8/2/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 8/7/14 7:30 PM
Winnipeg
Edmonton 8/8/14 6:00 PM
Montreal
Hamilton 8/8/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Ottawa 8/9/14 6:30 PM
Calgary
Connecticut 7:00 PM
San Antonio

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