Minnesota easily handled Northwestern at Welsh-Ryan Arena, winning 83-57. Daniel Oturu led all scorers with 22 points. The Gophers are now 13-13 on the season and 7-9 in conference play.
Fun fact, making wide open shots leads to good outcomes. The Gophers had their best shooting performance in over a month. Minnesota was 14-30 from behind the arc on their way to a ~60% effective field goal percentage shooting performance. Four players scored in double figures. The starting backcourt finally combined to outscore Daniel Oturu, and did so reasonably efficiently. For the game, the Gophers put up an almost 1.2 points per possession, a dominating offensive performance. About the only negative from a shooting performance was a 9-15 performance from the line, but seven of those attempts were taken by Sam Freeman and Jarvis Omersa.
Daniel Oturu bounced back after a tough game against Indiana to return to his nigh unguardable self. He was 8-11 from the field (3-5 from deep) and added 12 rebounds, three blocks, and multiple dunks like this.
Daniel Oturu is having a massive game today for @GopherMBB. pic.twitter.com/PjRcvCPw4a— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) February 23, 2020
On defense, Minnesota stifled Northwestern, holding the Wildcats to just over .8 points per possession. They did this because Northwestern is a bad basketball team, and the Gophers are far more locked in on the defensive end when shots are going in on offense.
Minnesota still needs to run the table to have a chance at post-season play, but they could absolutely not afford to drop this game. Mission one of many accomplished on that route.
Sam Freeman played! He looked alright against back ups, converting five points in just three minutes of action.
Bryan Greenlee also played! He recorded no stats during his time on the floor, but that means he did not turn the ball over. Progress when you can get it. (Editor’s note. Always trust your notes. He turned the ball over twice).
For those wondering, Minnesota did nothing different on offense from an action perspective. They have been getting these shots all year. Unfortunately, most of them fell against Northwestern, as opposed to Iowa and Indiana and DePaul and Butler and Utah and Illinois and Penn State and you get the picture.