6 p.m. vs. Wisconsin-Green Bay • Williams Arena • BTN Plus • (1130-AM, 103.5 FM)
First look at Robbins, Gach
Preview: The Gophers enter their eighth season under Richard Pitino on Wednesday against Wisconsin-Green Bay at the Barn. They originally were scheduled to start Nov. 11 against Albany, but that was canceled along with early home games vs. Long Island and Kent State this month. Minnesota also backed out of the Hall of Fame Tip-Off first scheduled for Nov. 21-22 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut. The NCAA decided the 2020-21 college hoops season would begin Nov. 25 because of COVID-19 concerns. Last season, the Gophers finished 15-16 after a win over Northwestern in the Big Ten tournament opening round before the pandemic shutdown. Green Bay went 17-16 last season but fired coach Linc Darner after five years with the program. The Phoenix hired first-year Division I head coach Will Ryan, the son of former Badgers coach Bo Ryan. The 42-year-old Ryan coached at Division II Wheeling University in 2019-20 and worked on staffs at North Dakota State and Wisconsin. The Phoenix, who have nine freshmen on their roster (including redshirts), were picked to finish eighth in the Horizon League preseason poll.
Players to watch: Junior transfers Both Gach (Utah) and Liam Robbins (Drake) received good news this fall when the NCAA approved their waivers to play this season. Pitino says both have NBA potential. Robbins was named to the preseason watch list for the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award as the nation’s top center. Green Bay sophomore guard Amari Davis was named All-Horizon League first team in the preseason after averaging 15.9 points last season, breaking former Green Bay guard and current Virginia coach Tony Bennett’s freshman scoring record.
Numbers: The Gophers are 19-3 against current Horizon League members. Their last loss against the league came 74-65 against Wisconsin-Milwaukee in the 2015-16 season.