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Gophers vs. Texas A&M - OPEN THREAD

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The battle for third place!

After a disappointing semi-final game the Gophers look to get back on track. The Portland loss may not end up hurting their resume assuming the Pilots win a lot more games, but losing a second in a row would be tough. The Aggies were the Big 12 coaches preseason 5th place team so on it's own this wouldn't be a terrible loss. It is more about how much a win over a likely tournament team would help us rather than how much a loss would hurt us. It isn't a must win, but we may need it if we stumble in the conference.

3 Keys to a win

  1. Turn the Aggies over - A&M turns the ball over on 18.9% of their possessions, which isn't terrible but it is weak enough that we really need to exploit it. We have been turning our opponents over to the tune of 32.1% of their possessions (2nd in the nation). This is such a strength of ours and it needs to be a major factor today.
    Control Tempo - this is really a key today because it was so lacking in the Portland game. Don't let them dictate tempo. Put the clamps down on their offense and make them work for each and every point.
  2. Contain Donald Sloan - don't let this kid get off for 20+. One thing that makes college basketball so much fun is that sometimes one guy (usually a guard) can get hot, carry and inspire the rest of his team to a big W. Don't let that be us.

Likely Starting Line-ups

Texas A&M

G - Dash Harris (5.4 and 3.4)
G - Donald Sloan (17.4 ppg and 4.4 rpg)
G - Derrick Roland (11.8 and 2.8)
F - Bryan Davis (9.0 and 7.0)
F - Nathan Walkup (5.8 and 2.8)

Bench - B.J. Holmes (11.0 and 2.6)

Minnesota

G - Al Nolen (6.6 ppg and 4.4 apg)
G - Lawrence Westbrook (14.3 and 2.8 rpg)
F - Rodney Williams (9.6 and 1.8)
F - Damian Johnson (12.4 and 2.8)
C - Ralph Sampson III (6.8 and 6.8)