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

Are the Gophers underrated?

Posted by: Amelia Rayno under College basketball, Gophers players Updated: January 3, 2013 - 11:23 AM

Interesting tidbit from ESPN’s Jay Bilas yesterday, who listed the Gophers as one of his top 5 underrated teams right now.

Coach Tubby Smith, he said, has dealt with his fair share of health and off-court issues, but with the team healthy, we’re finally seeing their potential (and his, with a squad he build from the ground up).

Here’s an excerpt from the piece: 

Tubby Smith had to listen to the naysayers question him all summer, when he has done a terrific job at Minnesota. Smith had to deal with injuries, a suspension or two and a lack of continuity late last season because of those two things. This season everyone is healthy, and the results are clear. The polls are even starting to catch up (No. 9 in the AP), but the Gophers' place on this list is a reflection of just how good they are and how (relatively) little recognition they're getting.

So here’s the question – are the Gophers UNDERRATED?

After all, they’re currently ranked No. 9 in the nation and for a squad that only has one truly impressive win (against Michigan State, which came after Minnesota was already put at No. 9), that’s not bad. The Gophers have had some solid wins over Memphis and Stanford, at USC and at Florida State, but none of those teams have really turned out like we’ve expected and therefore didn’t challenge the Gophers like we thought they would. Don’t get me wrong, the Gophers are playing really well. But underrated?

Underrated implies the attention a team is getting is beneath what it should be. But it seems to me the Gophers have gotten intriguing press ever since winning two of three in the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas. They have steadily climbed the rankings, week-after-week. They’ve been lauded for their defense, their balance, their athleticism, their impressive offensive rebounding. Should the Gophers be higher than No. 9 as conference play is starting? Perhaps Bilas thinks Minnesota should be talked about as a contender for the league title. If that’s true, should the Gophers be a contender for the National Championship too? Indiana and Michigan are in that conversation – if the Gophers are underrated, should they be in that conversation too?

I think the Gophers have plenty more to prove before they can be introduced to that level of respect, but right now, they’re doing all the right things. There’s no need to talk about the Gophers being underrated right now. Perhaps they were at the beginning of the year, but now, they’re gaining more respect week after week. To elevate any higher – or even keep their spot – they’ll have to earn it on the Big Ten court.

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Minnesota 35 FINAL
Miami 37
Baltimore 13 FINAL
Houston 25
Detroit 20 FINAL
Chicago 14
Cleveland 13 FINAL
Carolina 17
Atlanta 30 FINAL
New Orleans 14
Green Bay 20 FINAL
Tampa Bay 3
Kansas City 12 FINAL
Pittsburgh 20
New England 17 FINAL
NY Jets 16
NY Giants 37 FINAL
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Lamar
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UMKC
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TX A&M-CC 9:00 PM
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Marshall 9:00 PM
Nevada
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Houston
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San Diego St
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Washington
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Wichita State
Nebraska 12/23/14 12:00 AM
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Nevada 3 FINAL
Louisiana 16
Utah State 21 FINAL
Texas-El Paso 6
(23) Utah 45 FINAL
Colorado State 10
Western Mich 24 FINAL
Air Force 38
South Alabama 28 FINAL
Bowling Green 33
BYU 1:00 PM
Memphis
Marshall 12/23/14 5:00 PM
Northern Ill
Navy 12/23/14 8:30 PM
San Diego St
Central Mich 12/24/14 11:00 AM
Western Ky
Fresno State 12/24/14 7:00 PM
Rice
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North Carolina
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UCF
Cincinnati 12/27/14 12:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Duke 12/27/14 1:10 PM
(15) Arizona State
Miami-Florida 12/27/14 3:00 PM
So Carolina
Boston College 12/27/14 3:30 PM
Penn State
(25) Nebraska 12/27/14 7:00 PM
(24) USC
UMass Lowell 10:15 AM
Holy Cross
Temple 10:30 AM
Villanova
Georgia Southern 11:00 AM
Southern U
Xavier 11:00 AM
Kennesaw St
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Brescia 12:00 PM
Marshall
(22) West Virginia 1:00 PM
Ohio State
UMBC 1:00 PM
MD-Eastern Shore
Cornell 1:00 PM
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St Bonaventure 1:00 PM
Georgetown
New Hampshire 1:00 PM
Northeastern
Eastern Washington 1:30 PM
Florida
Rice 2:00 PM
Texas Southern
Butler 3:05 PM
Illinois State
UC Davis 4:00 PM
(7) Stanford
Washington St 4:00 PM
Loyola Marymount
Sacramento St 4:00 PM
San Jose St
SIU-Edwardsville 4:30 PM
UMKC
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IUPU-Ft Wayne
Belmont 6:00 PM
(15) Georgia
George Mason 6:00 PM
Longwood
Kansas 6:05 PM
Creighton
Abilene Christian 7:00 PM
Kansas State
UT Martin 7:00 PM
Missouri
Hampton 7:00 PM
(25) DePaul
Florida State 7:00 PM
Tulane
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Illinois
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BYU 8:00 PM
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2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
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