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Gophers' Murphy replaces Lynch for Big Ten Media Day

The Gophers had planned on having seniors Nate Mason and Reggie Lynch represent the team at Thursday’s Big Ten Media Day at Madison Square Garden in New York.

But there was a last minute change for player representation with Lynch being replaced by junior Jordn Murphy, who was at media day last year with Mason. Lynch’s absence was due to a “schedule conflict,” according to a team spokesman.

Lynch, a 6-foot-10 center from Edina, was last season’s Big Ten defensive player of the year and set the school’s single-season blocks record in his first year at Minnesota after transferring from Illinois State.

Mason, a first-team All-Big Ten guard in 2016-17, was named to the Bob Cousy Award preseason watch list this week. Murphy, a 6-7 junior forward, earned third-team All-Big Ten honors last season.

Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany will begin the press conferences at 8 a.m. CT. Big Ten coaches will follow him starting with Nebraska coach Tim Miles at 8:30-8:40 a.m. Minnesota coach Richard Pitino is the second coach up to address the media from 8:40-8:50 a.m. The coaches press conference list is here

Big Ten Network has live coverage of the press conferences until 2 p.m. CT. Watch it here. 

Stay tuned for updates Thursday throughout the day. Until then, read up on the Gophers being picked third in the unofficial media preseason poll. 

Gophers picked third in Big Ten preseason men's hoops media poll

With Big Ten Media Day around the corner on Thursday in New York, it wouldn't be the same without the league’s beat writers coming together to make our predictions for the 2017-18 men's basketball conference season.

The Gophers ended up landing in the media poll where preseason annuals picked them to finish third in the Big Ten, right behind runner-up Purdue. Not surprisingly, Michigan State was the unanimous choice to win the Big Ten this season, as was sophomore Miles Bridges and freshman Jaren Jackson Jr. to take conference player of the year and newcomer of the year honors, respectively. 

The gap between second, third and fourth place was far less than the one between the fourth and fifth spots. Purdue and Minnesota are separated by 10 points. Minnesota and Northwestern were a little further apart at 25 points. But the Wildcats were 40 points away from Maryland and Michigan tied at fifth. 

Minnesota senior guard Nate Mason, one of the 20 point guards on the preseason watch list for the Bob Cousy Award, was selected by the Big Ten’s media to be on the unofficial preseason all-conference first team. Gophers sophomore guard Amir Coffey picked up two votes for all-conference and junior forward Jordan Murphy also received one.

Check out  Adam Jardy of the Columbus Dispatch and Brendan F. Quinn of The Athletic Detroit who compiled the picks from the 28 writers, including myself. Below are their results:

Media preseason poll

1. Michigan State
2. Purdue 
3. Minnesota 
4. Northwestern 
T-5. Maryland 
T-5. Michigan 
7. Wisconsin
8. Iowa 
9. Indiana 
10. Penn State 
11. Ohio State
12. Illinois 
13. Nebraska 
14. Rutgers 

Preseason All-Big Ten team 

G -Nate Mason senior Minnesota 

G- Bryant McIntosh senior Northwestern 

F - Miles Bridges sophomore Michigan State 

F - Ethan Happ junior Wisconsin 

F - Moritz Wagner junior Michigan 

Here were my picks for order of finish and all-preseason team:

1. Michigan State 
2. Purdue 
3. Minnesota 
4. Northwestern 
5. Maryland 
6. Michigan 
7. Iowa
8. Wisconsin
9. Penn State
10. Indiana
11. Illinois
12. Ohio State
13. Nebraska 
14. Rutgers 

All-Big Ten team 

G- Nate Mason 

G- Bryant McIntosh 

F- Miles Bridges 

F- Vincent Edwards 

F- Ethan Happ 

Poll: How many games will the Timberwolves win this season?

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