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Minnesota Football: Golden Nugz - 10-21-14

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Gopher Basketball is going to be upon us VERY soon.  To get you ready for the season Fox Sports, Reid Forgrave has a nice profile on Richard Pitino and his plans for the Gopher Basketball Program and eerie similarities between he and his father.

First things first when it comes to Richard Pitino: There will always be a giant, Hall-of-Fame-sized elephant in the room any time anyone is talking about him. Richard Pitino looks like his dad; Richard Pitino sounds like his dad; Richard Pitino's basketball teams play the same frenetic, always-pressing pace as his dad's.

So it was no surprise that before long, as I sat in his office and talked about his grand plans for his future at Minnesota, we were talking about his dad and his past.

The comparisons are there, the name has clearly aided his career but Pitino also addresses that he still has to make the most of his opportunity.

I'm a realist. I understand (being Rick Pitino's son) has opened up a lot of doors. But being Rick Pitino's son isn't going to help me beat Tom Izzo on the road or beat Thad Matta. Now it's my opportunity, so I've got to do something with it."

And this quote just for good measure...

When players seemed a bit fed up at that recent, relentless practice - rolling eyes, shaking heads - Pitino lit into them.

"Did we win the Big Ten last year?" Pitino shouted to a now-silent gym. "Did we make the NCAA tournament last year?" The gym somehow got more quiet. "No! So all the head-shaking stops."

  • BT Powerhouse posted their 5 Bold Predictions for Gopher Basketball.  Top 4 finish, undefeated at home and Sweet 16...yup those are bold yet strangely they feel attainable if things fall the right way.

OK, time to get back to football and your 24th ranked Golden Gophers.