Staff Directory 6370598

Chip Scoggins

Columnist | Sports
Phone: 612-673-4484

Chip Scoggins is a sports columnist and enterprise writer for the Star Tribune. He has worked at the Star Tribune since 2000 and previously covered the Vikings, Gophers football, Wild, Wolves and high school sports.

Chip Scoggins is a sports columnist and enterprise writer for the Star Tribune. A graduate of the University of Missouri journalism school, Scoggins worked at newspapers in Texas, Connecticut, North Carolina and Chicago before joining the Star Tribune in 2000. He has been named Minnesota's Sportswriter of the Year four times by the National Sports Media Association.
Recent content from Chip Scoggins
Micah Nori has taken the lead coaching position for the Timberwolves since head coach Chris Finch's injury. He has a reputation as a smart strategist,

Scoggins: Wolves' stand-in coach with stand-up timing faces biggest test yet

The Timberwolves, down 0-2, will need the comedic timing and sharp strategies of Micah Nori, who made fans with his choice of words in halftime interviews.
The Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns walks off the court at the end of Game 2 of the Western Conference finals. Towns finished with 15 points on 4-for

Scoggins: In battle of stars, Towns and Edwards are not showing up

The Mavericks have two stars bringing it in the Western Conference finals. If the Wolves' two All-Stars can't match, the season won't last much longer.
P.J. Washington (25) and Karl-Anthony Towns fight for the ball in the second quarter of Game 1.

Scoggins: Flat KAT, tired Ant need jolt for Wolves to win series

Edwards looked lethargic. Towns missed too many shots. The Wolves' top two scoring threats made only 12 shots and scored 35 points combined in the Game 1 loss.
Anthony Edwards of the Wolves soaked in Sunday's Game 7 victory in Denver.

Scoggins: Edwards has great season . . . and adds great candor to it

The 22-year-old superstar shows no fear on the basketball court and no filter off it. The Words of Ant are always candid, often four-letter colorful, typically hysterical and loaded with insight.
Antoine Winfield and his son, Antoine Winfield Jr., review game film together at their home in 2015.

Scoggins: Winfield Jr.'s record contract has roots in bedtime stories

Former Gophers star Antoine Winfield Jr., now with the Tampa Bay Bucs, would fall asleep learning lessons from his father that would make him an elite NFL defensive back.
Jaden McDaniels puts some sauce on his slam in Thursday's third quarter.

Scoggins: 'When he plays well, we win.' McDaniels brings best to win

When Jaden McDaniels plays the way he did in Game 6, the Wolves can overwhelm any opponent. He needed only 10 shots to score 21 points.
Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic gestures during the fourth quarter of Game 5. Jokic scored 40 points.

Scoggins: Denver's Joker defies Wolves' attempts to stop him

Traditional defensive methods haven't worked in the playoffs against three-time MVP Nicola Jokic. So what can Wolves coach Chris Finch do about that for Game 6?
Karl-Anthony Towns missed every shot he took in the first quarter of Game 4 and finished with only 13 points.

Scoggins: If Towns won't deliver, Wolves won't beat Denver

While Jamal Murray found his way back to a strong supporting role for the Nuggets in Game 4, Karl-Anthony Towns was completely out of balance. That has to change.
“I’ll take the blame for this loss,” Anthony Edwards said, noting a lack of energy that led to 19 points Friday night in Game 3.

Scoggins: Wolves lost their identity in Game 3, and need to rediscover it quickly

Poor outside shooting and missed opportunities at the rim doomed the Wolves on Friday night. That will have to change for this to remain a series.
Timberwolves Kyle Anderson, left, and Naz Reid doubled up on Denver's Nikola Jokic during Monday's Game 2 defensive masterpiece.

Scoggins: Incredibly, it's defense that makes the Wolves sexy

Legends weigh in: "One of the best defensive teams I've ever seen." — Charles Barkley. "Defense that sells tickets!?" — Kevin Garnett
St. Thomas record-setter Anna Swanson is grateful for another track season, and much more. “I’m a living miracle," she said.

'I'm a living miracle.' Tommies athlete goes from broken bones to broken record

Anna Swanson was removed from a demolished car last year with a shattered pelvis and broken spine. Doctors thought her athletic career could be over. This year, she set a school record for the University of St. Thomas track team.
Who's better than the Timberwolves right now? Anthony Edwards has no answer for that.

Scoggins: Why these Wolves really can 'accomplish anything'

The older, wiser, stronger, better Wolves look ready to pull off a big NBA playoffs upset.
It appears President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly knew the route to Timberwolves success early on.

Scoggins: Wolves' decisionmaker knew what to do, what not to do

When he was named the new president of basketball operations, Tim Connelly warned he wouldn't be "scared to forge our own path." He found a route to prominence.
Trading up for edge rusher Dallas Turner, right, with his new teammate J.J. McCarthy on Friday, was the headline move to improve the Vikings defense i

Scoggins: Yes, Coach, Vikings defense really improved

Kevin O'Connell turned into an internet meme for his reaction to the Vikings' defensive moves in the draft, but he knows better than anyone that his team needs massive improvement on that side of the ball.
Vikings coach Kevin O'Connell and General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah flank the team's first-round draft picks, J.J. McCarthy and Dallas Turner, on Fri

Scoggins: Adofo-Mensah, O'Connell get Vikings reboot right in Year 3

The Vikings held a news conference Friday to welcome their top two draft picks. The moment doubled as an unofficial unveiling of management's vision for the team.
Brian Moss reacts to the Falcons taking Washington QB Michael Penix Jr. with the eighth pick in the NFL draft Thursday night. The Vikings selected Mic

Scoggins: Adofo-Mensah meets draft night challenge in a big way

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah's first two drafts as Vikings GM left a lot to be desired, to put it kindly. But he was up to the challenge Thursday on one of the most important nights in the team's history.
Vikings GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, left, and coach Kevin O’Connell need to be able to live with giving up any quarterbacks they leave on the table in th

Scoggins: Worried about costly trade to draft a quarterback? Don't be.

Which one, at what pick, for what cost? If the Vikings draft a quarterback who becomes a star, you won't remember what they paid to get him.
Every season with Kirill Kaprizov on the roster has a chance to be special.

Scoggins: 'Wait one more year' can't be the Wild's plan. Thankfully, it isn't.

Logic and cap math might suggest next season is a layover. Wrong. You don't waste even one season when you have a superstar.
Timberwolves coach Chris Finch has to figure out the Suns in the teams' first-round NBA playoffs meeting, after Phoenix led by 20 or more points in al

Scoggins: Finch feeling heat of the Suns as playoff battle looms

Can coach Chris Finch figure this out? Phoenix has owned the Wolves this season, and now he has two more days to fix that before Game 1.
Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns drives on Hawks forward Bruno Fernando on Friday, Towns' first game back from a lengthy injury hiatus. He figur

Scoggins: Why 'championship or bust' fits these Wolves

Karl-Anthony Towns said it himself, almost two years ago, and now this woebegone franchise finally looks ready for a deep playoff run.
It was a bang-bang play as Carlos Correa's throw landed in Christian Vázquez's glove to nail Shohei Ohtani at the plate.

Scoggins: Anatomy of a game-saving play as Correa throws out Ohtani

Four components to one play that had zero margin for error. The Twins beat the Dodgers thanks to a crucial throw home from their star shortstop.
In search of a quarterback in the upcoming draft, the Vikings have their eyes on J.J. McCarthy of Michigan, left, and Drake Maye of North Carolina.

Scoggins: McCarthy or Maye? Ex-U coach breaks down Vikings' options

The two quarterbacks in the NFL draft most linked with the Vikings both played the Gophers last season in the span of a month.
Cory Provus is moving from the Twins radio booth to the TV broadcasting booth.

Scoggins: Cory Provus getting ready for 'biggest challenge' of career

Today's game will mark the first Twins home game with Provus, who had been the Twins' radio voice, replacing Dick Bremer on TV.
Paige Bueckers (5) played against Caitlin Clark (22) when UConn defeated Iowa 92-72 in the 2021 Sweet 16 in San Antonio.

Scoggins: Transcendent stars meet again in Bueckers vs. Clark battle

Friday night's NCAA semifinal between Paige Bueckers of UConn and Caitlin Clark of Iowa — their first on-court meeting since 2021 — will have millions of TV viewers riveted. But neither player needs a title to validate her legacy.
Gophers men's basketball coach Ben Johnson will need to reconstruct the roster again with recent losses to the transfer portal.

Scoggins: College teams evaporate before fans' eyes in transfer portal nightmare

It was another rough transfer portal week for Ben Johnson's Gophers, the product of a system gone awry.
The Jones family of Prior Lake have three sons playing basketball this season. From left, father Kenderick; William, a junior at Prior Lake High; Robe

Scoggins: March Madness a travel puzzle for this Minnesota family

With one son at Iowa State and another playing for Minnesota State Mankato, the Jones family of Prior Lake has been zigzagging the country to watch NCAA basketball tournament games.
Football coach P.J. Fleck doesn't want rival schools getting interested in his Gophers.

Scoggins: We can't go on like this: NIL chaos in six words.

Yes, student-athletes should be compensated. Yes, "name, image and likeness" is here to stay. But leaders should not accept the current approach as the proper way forward.
Poet Davis, shown in a photo from last season, is the leader of Minneapolis South.

Scoggins: State tourney-bound player named Poet knows right word

Minneapolis South is headed to the boys basketball state tournament for the first time in 32 years because its floor leader, Poet Davis, stayed at the school while so many of his ex-teammates left.
Minnetonka celebrates after defeating Hopkins in the Class 4A girls basketball state championship game at Williams Arena on Saturday, ending a state t

Scoggins: 'Lindsay Whalen babies' show out at state tourney

Many playing in the girls basketball state tournament grew up watching Lindsay Whalen star for the Lynx. Now they're drawing offers from D-I schools and following the path paved by the likes of Paige Bueckers.
The key figures in Thursday's drama: Orono coach Barry Wohler, left, and player Nolan Groves, shown during last season's state tournament (Brennan Sch

Scoggins: It rained buzzer-beaters, and Orono rode out the storm

A two-overtime boys basketball section final against Benilde-St. Margaret's featured last-second baskets at every breaking point.
Don't call Sam Darnold a "bridge quarterback." “He’s a quarterback that’s on our roster under contract for a year,” Vikings GM Kwesi Adofo-Men

Scoggins: Vikings' Darnold era may not be lengthy, but it's the right step for both sides

Both Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and Sam Darnold danced around the implications of the new quarterback's one-year contract.
Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy dives over Minnesota defensive back Tariq Watson to score a touchdown last fall at Huntington Bank Stadium.

Scoggins: O'Connell must choose a QB -- and the GM has to draft him

Sam Darnold serves a purpose, but his purpose won't be to lead the Vikings for years to come. Coach Kevin O'Connell and GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah need to get that quarterback in the draft.
Kirk Cousins could end his career with the Falcons, his third NFL team.

Scoggins: Cousins got his money, and Vikings were right to start over

Kirk Cousins became too expensive, and the Vikings bosses didn't cave. Bravo. Now, ace the next text: who's the new QB?
Iowa guard Caitlin Clark came storming back after a first half she called "probably my worst ever" to lead the Hawkeyes to their third straight title

Scoggins: Clark recovers from horrid 1st half to lead Iowa comeback

Caitlin Clark missed shots that she probably makes with her eyes shut most days. She slammed her fist in frustration. She complained to the refs. Then she took control.
New London-Spicer girls basketball coach Mike Dreier high-fives his players after practice earlier this month in New London.

How a gruff 'teddy bear' became the winningest coach in state history

In his 46th season at New London-Spicer, Mike Dreier has compiled 1,069 victories, two state championships, six runner-up finishes — and three technical fouls.
The draw of watching Caitlin Clark break Lynette Woodard's record was enough to sell out Williams Arena for just the second time in Gophers women's ba

Scoggins isn't a Swiftie, but sure he witnessed basketball's version

Fans packed the Barn to the rafters and the greatest scorer in women's college basketball history. Caitlin Clark swished a three-pointer on the game's first possession. And three more in quick succession.
The end: This called strike three against Max Kepler was the capper for a K-filled Twins 2023 season.

Scoggins: Are Twins strikeouts a problem? Or am I the problem?

Are we going to have to sit through another summer of K after K after K? Derek Falvey calmed Chip Scoggins down (a little).
Gophers coach Dawn Plitzuweit needs to elevate the overall talent on the roster so the season doesn’t crumble if injured star Mara Braun can’t ret

Scoggins: U's other players must step up to fill void left by Braun's absence

The drop-off in playmaking in Mara Braun's absence is impossible to ignore. Coach Dawn Plitzuweit needs to elevate the rest of the roster for the Gophers to be successful.
Deb Diggins held and wore photos of her daughter Jessie at the cross-country World Cup at Theodore Wirth Park on Saturday.

Scoggins: World Cup skiing at Wirth Park serves as Diggins family reunion

Among the crowd of nearly 20,000 cheering for Jessie Diggins on Saturday were 30 or so family members, including "pretty much the entire St. Croix Valley."
Justin Jefferson and Kirk Cousins: Chip Scoggins says keep these two together.

Scoggins: Super Bowl lessons for Vikings — keep stars, fix defense

The Vikings have a quarterback quandary, a star receiver awaiting a massive payday and holes galore in their defense. But there's a solution for every problem, right?
Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards (5) and Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert (27) argue a foul called against Gobert in the second h

Scoggins: Why waste energy complaining to referees?

Watching the Wolves' Anthony Edwards and Karl-Anthony Towns makes you wonder about the effectiveness of griping to officials.
Dawson Garcia celebrated with the Williams Arena student section at the end of the game Tuesday.

Scoggins: The Barn can still rock, but U needs to rethink ticket prices

The Gophers' win over Michigan State on Tuesday showed that you don't have to tear down Williams Arena to get an incredible college basketball experience in Dinkytown.
Shot clocks are now in high school gyms, like this one at a recent Wayzata-Maple Grove girls game.

Scoggins: The clock is ticking — and that's making basketball even better

All of the improvements were on display this week when two of the top high school teams in the area played. One rallied from a huge deficit to win; both combined for more than 200 points and a thrilling finish.
Against San Antonio on Saturday, and for several days before then, coach Chris Finch, center Rudy Gobert and the rest of the Wolves raised way too man

Scoggins: The Wolves played like adults at OKC, and that mattered

Mike Conley was out, and the Timberwolves finally made winning decisions without him. Now they need to prove that wasn't just a one-night thing.
Frank Ragnow

Scoggins: Why Chanhassen's Ragnow is the 'stud' of the Detroit Lions' rise

All NFL eyes are on the Detroit Lions, and Frank Ragnow is their rock. What drives his powerful performances? It's a family thing.

Twins top prospect Brooks Lee speeding through minor leagues, but wants much more

Little more than a year after turning pro, Brooks Lee is awed at being with the St. Paul Saints — just 10 miles from his ultimate destination: Target Field. But he wants more than to merely arrive.

Roseville's Mike Muscala finds 'gratitude' in an unexpectedly long NBA career

The average second round draft pick lasts 3.3 seasons in the NBA, Mike Muscala is entering his 11th. The Roseville native now speaks with a veteran's clarity on the game and life.

What's it like to watch the Twins from Target Field's towering new neighbor? I went up to find out

Construction workers in that can't-miss project next to Target Field get to watch day games on their lunch break. I joined them, despite my fear of heights.

St. Thomas football coach Glenn Caruso takes 'new job' — serving as assistant to his daughter Anna

Glenn Caruso, the longtime St. Thomas head coach, didn't need any time to think about the job offer — to be his daughter's assistant with a girls softball team in St. Paul. It's 'wicked awesome,' he says.
While higher-profile NBA coaches whose teams had better years are getting fired, Chris Finch is keeping his job with the Timberwolves.

Scoggins: Amid firing frenzy, Finch gets another year to coach Wolves

Timberwolves ownership decided to show patience by sticking with coach Chris Finch after an erratic season that was a bucket of cold water to the face. Was that the right move?

How Paige Bueckers is using endorsement deals to give back, in Minnesota and beyond

Paige Bueckers could secure as many endorsement deals as she wants. But the UConn and ex-Hopkins star is being intentional about her NIL deals, and she has a stipulation she calls "non-negotiable."

High school spring sports clash again with their nemesis: Winter weather

The annual issue is even more of an inconvenience this year because the cold is lingering and snow levels have been historic.
If Byron Buxton can stay in uniform and sign autographs and make plays all summer, the Twins will win.

Scoggins: Here are two things Twins need to do less often in 2023

Sonny Gray unwittingly became the most popular Twins player in uniform last week, a hero to many before even throwing his first pitch of the season. He did it by a pointed message to his bosses.
Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck lectured during a class at the Carlson School of Management on Tuesday.

Scoggins: Professor Fleck? Yes, that's the coach in a U of M classroom

P.J. Fleck's lecturing style is fast-paced and energetic. And loud. Really loud. His students in the Carlson School of Management class get the full Hurricane Fleck experience.

Ricky Davis' life takes surprising turn as Timberwolves veteran gets Minneapolis North coaching job

Davis played 117 games over two seasons for the Timberwolves and never envisioned putting down roots here once he retired from pro basketball. He understands why people were shocked by his new job.
Kyle Anderson and Karl-Anthony Towns celebrated a dunk by Naz Reid during a game last month.

Scoggins: Can Wolves make Towns fit into their winning formula?

When he returns from the injury that has sidelined him for 33 games, it will be up to Karl-Anthony Towns and Chris Finch to work KAT's game into a formula that's working well right now.
Gophers quarterback Athan Kaliakmanis (8) was helped to the locker room after taking a hit to the legs in the second quarter of Thursday’s Pinstripe

Scoggins: Kaliakmanis' injury, poor field conditions create anxiety

Quarterback Athan Kaliakmanis seems to have avoided serious injury in the Gophers' Pinstripe Bowl victory over Syracuse at Yankee Stadium, but it's time for the Big Ten to stop playing bowl games on baseball fields.
Gophers quarterback Athan Kaliakmanis has completed 52% of his passes with three touchdown passes and four interceptions.

Scoggins: Fleck signals future plans with Kaliakmanis, new receivers

The Gophers football program is making moves that suggest it will build around freshman QB Athan Kaliakmanis, which meets with the approval of one former U quarterback.
Vikings cornerback Chandon Sullivan thought he returned two fumbles for touchdowns Saturday. Officials disagreed.

Scoggins: Officiating made Vikings' job that much more difficult in epic comeback victory

Chandon Sullivan had two defensive touchdowns erased by questionable calls.
Defensive coordinator Ed Donatell is the man in charge of turning around a struggling unit.

Scoggins: Unraveling Vikings defense threatens to sink the season

Veteran coordinator Ed Donatell has managed to do the unthinkable: Take a bad defense and fail to improve it despite a concerted effort by the organization to upgrade the talent last offseason.
Gophers coach P.J. Fleck walked off the field with offensive lineman Aireontae Ersery after defeating Northwestern. Fleck agreed to a new contract a f

Scoggins: Here's why Fleck got that $1 million raise

Beating Wisconsin is great for Minnesota, but the win-loss record is only one factor these days determining college coaches' salaries.
Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell, gave instructions to quarterback Kirk Cousins, (8) in the first half Minneapolis.,Minn. on Sunday Septem

Scoggins: Getting respect from coach leads to Cousins' increased success

It serves no purpose to dredge up issues or personality conflicts with the previous regime, but the way Kevin O'Connell talked about Kirk Cousins publicly from the moment he took the job had purpose behind it.
New London-Spicer’s Grant Paffrath (12) pitched the ball to teammate Brycen Christensen for the winning touchdown in the Class 3A Prep Bowl final.

'Did we really win, or did I dream that?' Meet the team that pulled off a Prep Bowl miracle

Football Across Minnesota: New London-Spicer's state championship was like no other, and they'll talk about this walkoff forever. And some final FAM thoughts of the season.
Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins showed his toughness on the run and in the pocket Sunday against the Jets.

Scoggins: On off day, Cousins takes hits, makes throws when they matter

Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins was uncharacteristically erratic against the Jets, but when his team faced a gut-check moment he put his toughness on display.
“Coaching is having fun with kids and making them feel welcomed and wanting to be here,” Nolan Desjarlait says. “My job is to keep them moving.�

Red Lake Nation football team hasn't won a game in years, but its coach keeps kids undefeated

They often play against opponents with twice as many players. Sometimes, coach Nolan Desjarlait wonders how he keeps doing it. The answer always comes: "I refuse to give up on them."
Red Lake Nation hasn't won in years, but its coach keeps kids undefeated

Red Lake Nation hasn't won in years, but its coach keeps kids undefeated

Sometimes, coach Nolan Desjarlait wonders how he keeps doing it. The answer always comes: "I refuse to give up on them."
Memphis Grizzlies forward Brandon Clarke (15) has his shot block by Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards (1) with defensive help from center R

Scoggins: KAT-less Wolves need Edwards to play, lead like an MVP

Anthony Edwards had that look he displayed so often last season, a look of determination from a competitor about to unleash like a tsunami. The Timberwolves are going to need that now.
Quarterback Jaran Roste leads Bethel on the field, and stays quite busy off of it.

A big delay, then a big win; former Gophers QB leads another winner

Football Across Minnesota: Bethel's surprising playoff victory came 30 hours after landing in Oregon. Bryan Cupito has found a new football love in Minneapolis: the Phelps Falcons. More on P.J. Fleck's "you all" comment, Justin Jefferson's greatness and more.
Gophers quarterback Athan Kaliakmanis handled a snap against Wisconsin in the first half Saturday.

Scoggins: New QB Kaliakmanis delivered for Gophers' new offense

Freshman quarterback Athan Kaliakmanis played with skill and poise Saturday as the Gophers focused on the pass and kept Paul Bunyan's Axe.
Gophers coach P.J. Fleck saw his team complete just one pass in the second half of last Saturday’s 13-10 loss to Iowa.

Scoggins: Fleck's old-school offense needs star upgrade before next year

The Gophers had a prolific, balanced offense in 2019 but have turned one-dimensional and stubbornly remains that way.
Thursday’s game against the Patriots will tell how good a job Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell did in preparing his team to bounce back from the Dall

Scoggins: Vikings appear ready for Patriots. If they are, credit O'Connell

In his first real test, first-year coach Kevin O'Connell needs to set the tone this week after the Dallas Debacle. If he succeeds and the Vikings win ... what Dallas Debacle?
Bemidji’s Brandon Alt is one of the top quarterbacks in NCAA Division II.

This record-breaking QB-receiver combo got started in third grade

Football Across Minnesota: Longtime friends Brandon Alt and Brendan Beaulieu are behind Bemidji State's big-time success. Also, brutal weekend for Vikings and Gophers. A delayed weekend for a solid Prep Bowl.
P.J. Fleck reacts after an Iowa interception late in the fourth quarter Saturday

Scoggins: Fleck's choice of cautious play calls over boldness backfires again

This loss, P.J. Fleck's sixth in six games against Iowa, belongs in the category of self-inflicted, not the result of being overmatched by a superior team.
P.J. Fleck is 0-5 against Iowa during his tenure as Gophers head coach, but he has Minnesota on a three-game winning streak.

Scoggins: Here's how Fleck, 0-for-Floyd, can end Iowa's streak

The Gophers have won three in a row and are still hunting a Big Ten West title. To keep that goal, they'll need to change how they've handled the Hawkeyes' strengths.
Quarterback Kirk Cousins, shown with a sideline tablet in 2019, is an avid watcher of film.

Scoggins: Vikings are rolling, and rolling the tape is big part of success

The line that separates winning and losing is incredibly thin, so coaches and players spend hours upon hours analyzing video. Here's a look at how they do it and how it has changed.