The Gophers men's basketball team will be down sophomore forward Dawson Garcia and freshman forward Pharrel Payne in Wednesday night's game against Indiana, the team announced.
Garcia, the team's leading scorer (14.9 points per game) and rebounder (6.3 rebounds per game), suffered a right foot injury late in the second half of Sunday's 60-56 loss at Michigan. Payne (7.2 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.1 blocks) is also sidelined indefinitely after going through concussion protocol. The 6-9 Cottage Grove native had been making strides defensively matching up with the league's top big men the last two games.
The Hoosiers also will be missing a key figure: Coach Mike Woodson will miss the game as he recovers from COVID-19. Assistant coach Yasir Rosemond will lead the Hoosiers.
The Gophers, who also play Saturday at Northwestern, were already missing freshman guard Braeden Carrington, who is out three to four weeks because of a right leg stress reaction.
Only seven scholarship players (including former walk-on Will Ramberg) who have played this season are available for Wednesday's game. Forwards Parker Fox and Isaiah Ihnen are out for the year with knee injuries suffered over the summer.
Last season, the Gophers were down to only seven scholarship players due to injury and COVID-19 last season, but they pulled off a 68-65 win against Rutgers at the Barn.
Time: 8 p.m. CT, Wednesday. Where: Williams Arena. Line: Gophers 10.5-point underdogs. Series: Indiana leads 100-67, including 84-79 win in Minneapolis on Feb. 27, 2022. TV: Big Ten Network. Online/Live video: BTN-Plus. Radio: 100.3-FM
MINNESOTA GOPHERS (7-11, 1-7 BIG TEN)
Pos.-Player Ht. Yr. PPG
G – Ta'Lon Cooper 6-4 195 Jr. 10.8
G – Taurus Samuels 6-1 195 Sr. 2.5
F – Jamison Battle 6-7 220 Jr. 12.1
F – Joshua Ola-Joseph 6-7 215 Fr. 7.2
C – Treyton Thompson 7-0 210 So. 1.6
Key reserves – Jaden Henley, G, 6-7, Fr., 3.9 ppg; Will Ramberg, F, 6-5, Jr., 1.6 ppg.
Coach: Ben Johnson 20-28 career (2nd season)
Notable: Gophers forward Jamison Battle, who missed the first four games this season after foot surgery, has been playing with a lingering back injury suffered in last week's loss vs. Illinois. Battle, who averages 12 points per game, only has eight points combined on 4-for-20 shooting in the losses to Purdue and Illinois. … The Gophers announced 6-8 freshman forward Kadyn Betts will redshirt the 2022-23 season after reclassifying and joining the team early this year. Betts will be part of a highly touted 2023 class that was signed Nov. 9, including five-star center Dennis Evans III and four-star guard Cameron Christie. Christie and Evans were named McDonald's All-American nominees last week. … The Gophers lost the five games against the Hoosiers. The last victory in the series was 84-63 at home on Feb. 16, 2019.
INDIANA HOOSIERS (13-6, 4-4)
Pos.-Player Ht. Yr. PPG
G – Jalen Hood-Schifino 6-6 213 Fr. 12.5
G – Trey Galloway 6-4 203 Jr. 7.6
F – Miller Kopp 6-7 215 Sr. 8.0
F – Jordan Geronimo 6-6 225 Jr. 5.9
F – Trayce Jackson-Davis 6-9 245 Sr. 19.4
Reserves – Malik Reneau, F, 6-9, Fr., 6.7 ppg; Race Thompson, F, 6-8, Sr., 7.9 ppg; Tamar Bates, G, 6-5, So., 8.7 ppg.
Coach: Mike Woodson 34-20 (2nd season)
Notable: The Hoosiers were the preseason favorites to win the Big Ten with Jackson-Davis and Thompson returning in the frontcourt, along with Johnson's leadership on the perimeter. But injuries to Johnson (foot) and Thompson (knee) led to Indiana falling out of early contention with a three-game losing streak to open Big Ten play in 2023. Thompson, former Armstrong standout, returned last weekend. But Jackson-Davis took his scoring to another level to help Indiana bounce back with three-straight wins, including back-to-back 30-point performances.
Fuller's score prediction: Indiana 70, Gophers 57.