Minnesota ended the 2020-2021 season with a loss in the Big Ten Tournament to Ohio State. The Gophers have no realistic shot to be invited to the NCAA Tournament, and should not expect an invitation to the NIT.
The general tenor of public opinion suggests that this game was Richard Pitino’s last as the coach of the men’s basketball team. As a metaphor for his tenure, it wasn’t bad. The Gophers started ice cold, as they have been all season, and spotted the Buckeyes with a double digit lead. For the game, Minnesota was 28-77 and 8-32 from behind the arc. They end their season as the worst shooting P5 team in the country, and the worst shooting team in my time as a fan. The Gophers were also 11-17 from the line. In the second half, Minnesota made it close, getting well-timed baskets from Marcus Carr, Jamal Mashburn Jr., and Brandon Johnson. With fifteen seconds to play, Carr hit a three pointer to make it a one point game. Unfortunately, Ohio State successfully broke the ensuing press to make layups, fouled Carr to prevent him from another chance at a game saver, and escaped with a four point win.
Yes, it was clearly a flagrant. Yes, I’m pretty confident it was a travel at the end. No those calls did not change the outcome of the game. That was sealed when the Gophers spotted the Buckeyes a double digit lead out of the gate.
While this season was an unquestionable bummer, I am always happy for the readers and commenters on these posts. Our blog is a community, occasionally a rancorous one, for which I am very proud to be considered a member. We are confident that the next few weeks are going to be busy, so we hope that you stick around.