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Minnesota Basketball: Three keys to the Gophers beating Texas A&M Corpus Christi

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Here is what the Gophers need to do to beat the Islanders

NCAA Basketball: Minnesota at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Barn

7:00 PM

BTN

Texas A&M Corpus Christi

And now the Gophers move from the games they were supposed to lose to 3 games in a row that they absolutely should win.

Texas A&M Corpus Christi

Mascot: Islanders
Conference: Southland
Record: 9-1
KenPom Rank: 314

So the Islanders have, like the Gophers, taken care of business getting out to a 9-1 start. Now, they have played a far weaker schedule than even Minnesota’s. But they have won 90% of their games so far. Two wins over D2 opponents and then all of their games except for their loss were against opponents ranked 276 or lower according to KenPom.com. Giving them a strength of schedule that ranks 350th out of 358. Their lone opponent in the top 100 was Texas A&M, who beat them by 21.

So can the Gophers give the Islanders their second loss of the season?

KEYS TO A GOPHER WIN

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No Turnovers! - This is the top key of tonight’s game. The Islanders rank 9th in the country in forcing turnovers, Minnesota is 3rd in not turning it over. For both teams, this is a strategy. If CC is able to exert their will and force turnovers, this will be closer than it should be.

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Be physical with Isaac Mushila - A JUCO transfer for CC has typically been very active for the Islanders, averaging 15.3 points and 9.1 rebounds this year. He has 4 double-doubles and has been within a couple rebounds of having 6. I’d like to see the Gophers body him up and get physical with him.

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Stay focused - Are the Gophers good enough to win this game by showing up? Most likely, yes. Are they so good that a loss is virtually impossible? Nope. Play hard, execute, do the things they have been doing and do not look past this game. Easy to type, harder to fulfill.

PREDICTION

It is nice to be back to predicting a win. Because the Gophers really should win.

It really is important that they show up and still do the things that they’ve been doing all season.

Minnesota - 77
Texas A&M CC - 61