Williams said that while he wants to use Griffen more, he also wants to limit Griffen’s position changes so that he can stay focused and effective.
“With a guy that has that much talent,” Williams said, “you lock them into one or two positions and then he is even more special because he is doing what he is doing and you’re limiting the amount of things that he does.”
• The University of Minnesota will celebrate 50 years of service to the school by former track coach Roy Griak on Sept. 26 at the DQ Club Room of TCF Bank Stadium.
• Tubby Smith has added former Gophers basketball staff members Joe Esposito, Vince Taylor and Steve Goodson to his staff at Texas Tech. Goodson had accepted a coaching job at a prep school in Scottsdale, Ariz., and then was convinced by Tubby to join the Red Raiders staff. Ron Jirsa, another member of Smith’s Gophers staff, has retired from coaching.
• Gophers outfielder Bobby Juan is having a banner year while playing for the La Crosse (Wis.) team of the Northwoods League, playing well in the field and hitting .293.
• The Huntsville (Ala.) Times recently had a feature on the fast rise of East Ridge center J.C. Hassenauer, who has committed to Alabama. Hassenauer, who received offers only from Alabama, the Gophers and Vanderbilt, has risen from being a three-star prospect to generally being considered the top center in the country in the Class of 2014. According to the story, his reputation has only grown since being named the offensive line MVP at The Opening, a big camp for top recruits held in Beaverton, Ore., in July.
• Former Gophers center Colton Iverson has signed a one-year contract with Besiktas of the Turkish League. Iverson was drafted in the second round by the Celtics, but the team already had 15 players signed to guaranteed contracts, so Iverson wouldn’t have been playing with them this year. … Former St. Cloud Tech and South Dakota State standout Nate Wolters has agreed to a guaranteed contract with the Milwaukee Bucks and most likely will be on the squad this year.
• While the big talk in Minnesota basketball recruiting surrounds Apple Valley point guard Tyus Jones, DeLaSalle forward Reid Travis and former Cooper guard Rashad Vaughn in the Class of 2014, the Class of 2015 has its first big name in Jarvis Johnson. The 6-1 point guard out of DeLaSalle is ranked as the 55th-best recruit in the country by ESPN.com and already has offers from the Gophers, Iowa State, UCLA, Marquette and Wisconsin, among others.
• A minor note in Major League Baseball’s suspension of 13 players for using performance-enhancing drugs was that former Twins third baseman Danny Valencia was cleared of all wrongdoing after his name was linked to the Biogenesis clinic in Florida. Valencia adamantly denied any connection when his name was leaked in earlier news reports and said he had no idea how it could have gotten tied in with the scandal.
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