Making significant physical gains during the offseason was a staple for Gophers basketball players the last five seasons under Richard Pitino. 

Veteran strength coach Shaun Brown was a big part of that development, but he's now at West Virginia. The Gophers announced Monday the hiring of Steve Felde, who replaces Brown for his third stint at Minnesota.

Felde spent the last five years at Miami (Fla.), but he headed the strength and conditioning program for Tubby Smith's NCAA tournament run and final season with the Gophers in 2012-13. Before taking that position in Minneapolis, the Milwaukee native was the head strength coach for 13 Division I sports at Wisconsin-Milwaukee, including men’s and women’s basketball from 2007-12.

"Steve has a tremendous wealth of experience in helping teams succeed," Pitino said in a statement. "He has a track record of developing student-athletes to compete at the highest level and I'm excited for him to help our program and our guys continue to develop."

It's ironic that Brown initially replaced Felde with the Gophers when Pitino was hired in 2013, and now it's the opposite scenario this summer. Felde, who also spent time on Minnesota's staff as an assistant strength coach in 2005, most recently was promoted to director of Olympic Sports performance with the Hurricanes in 2016.

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