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

Oto Osenieks has played his last game at Minnesota

Posted by: Amelia Rayno under College basketball, Gophers coaches, Gophers players Updated: March 5, 2014 - 3:05 PM

Oto Osenieks has played his last game at the University of Minnesota.

In an unexpected twist on what seemed like a manageable injury, the Gophers sent out a press release on Wednesday announcing that the forward wouldn't be back on the court -- either this year or next.

Osenieks, who last played at Ohio State on Feb. 22, has had cartilage issues in his left knee, spawning from old surgeries. The Gophers have downplayed the injury, not ruling Osenieks out of playing at Michigan until the day of the game.

"Unfortunately, this injury will limit his ability to continue playing beyond this season," coach Richard Pitino said in a release.

Osenieks, in his fourth year at the school, is on track to receive his bachelor's degree in May, but the forward had one year of basketball eligibility remaining after redshirting his freshman year.

Pitino also said Osenieks, who is interested in pursuing a career in coaching, will remain with the team next season "assisting and supporting our team in day-to-day operations." 

Osenieks will be honored at Senior Day on Sunday, when the Gophers play Penn State at Williams Arena.

His departure gives the Gophers yet another scholarship option for 2014. The Gophers had one leftover from a three-recruit fall signing class. Then Wally Ellenson made the decision earlier this month to focus on track and field. Now Osenieks has been taken off the roster as well -- giving Minnesota three more spots to potentially fill for next season.

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