Preview: Gophers coach Richard Pitino wants his players to be ready for a Texas-Arlington team that has been battle-tested vs. major conference foes. The Mavericks beat Ohio State and Memphis last season, and they lost at Texas in overtime. The Gophers dropped home games last year to midmajors South Dakota, South Dakota State and Wisconsin-Milwaukee. But Pitino’s team was ready to play in Friday’s opener vs. Louisiana-Lafayette, jumping to as large as a 27-point lead in an 86-74 victory.
Players to watch: Nate Mason (15 points), Dupree McBrayer (15) and Amir Coffey (13) combined for 43 points and seven of 10 team three-pointers in the Gophers’ three-guard lineup Friday. … Texas-Arlington got 52 points from guards Jalen Jones (23 points) and Kaelon Wilson (19 on 8-for-8 shooting) and Erick Neal (10) in an 89-82 victory over Texas Southern on Saturday. Sun Belt Preseason Player of the Year Kevin Hervey had 16 points and 10 rebounds in his first game back from a torn ACL.
Numbers: The Gophers had their 47-game nonconference home winning streak ended last season by South Dakota. A victory Monday would start another streak at two games.