During his team's pregame press conference Wednesday, Trevor Mbakwe apologized for being a distraction as the Gophers prepare to face eighth-ranked Purdue Thursday at Williams Arena.

Gophers coach Tubby Smith said Mbakwe, the team's top scorer and rebounder, will not start against the Boilermakers, even though he opted against suspending him following his Monday arrest for allegedly violating a harassment restraining order requested by a former girlfriend two years ago.

Smith said Mbakwe will have to deal with "internal" punishments but didn't go into detail. Colton Iverson will replace him in the starting lineup, the fourth-year coach said Wednesday.



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