Date: Friday, December 21, 2018
Time: 7:00 p.m. CT
Location: Minneapolis, Minn.
Arena: Williams Arena (14,625)
Series: First Meeting
Series (Home): First Meeting
Current Streak: n/a
Richard Pitino vs. N.C. A&T: First Meeting
Minnesota vs. MEAC: 9-0
Richard Pitino vs. MEAC: 2-0
• The Minnesota men’s basketball team returns to action on Friday night after a nine-day break for exams, hosting North Carolina A&T.
• Head coach Richard Pitino will be going for his 100th victory at the helm of Gopher basketball in just over five seasons. He would become just the ninth coach in program history to reach the mark.
• Three players in senior Jordan Murphy, sophomore Isaiah Washington and freshman Daniel Oturu each recorded double-doubles last time out against North Florida. It’s the first time that has happened since the Nov. 15, 2017 game against Niagara. Included in that was 13 assists by Washington, the second-most in single-game program history (and most without committing a turnover). It was the most since Arriel McDonald’s 13 assists on March 5, 1994.
• Earlier this month, senior forward Jordan Murphy became the 11th player in Big Ten history with 1,400+ points and 1,000+ career rebounds. Additionally, Murphy broke Jim Brewer’s 45-year old school record when he scored 18 points and 13 rebounds against Nebraska for his 52nd career double-double. Murphy leads the nation in rebounding (12.6) and is fourth in double-doubles (eight) this season, as of Dec. 20.
• Freshman Daniel Oturu has posted back-to-back double-doubles, including 13 points and 11 rebounds last week against North Florida. Oturu has seven games this season with eight or more rebounds, and it was his fifth game in double‐figures for points. Oturu is leading the team and ranks third in the Big Ten blocking two shots per contest.
SCOUTING THE AGGIES
• North Carolina A&T is 4-7 on the season and snapped a two-game win streak with a loss at Virginia Tech on Wednesday night.
• Of the Aggies’ four wins, one came on the road against the Gophers’ next opponent, Mount St. Mary’s. NC A&T defeated the Mountaineers, 74-60, in Emmitsburg, Md., on Nov. 21.
• A pair of Aggies average double-digit scoring, led by Qua Copeland who chips in 12.5 points per game. Terry Harris adds 11.7 points per game.
• Last year, the Aggies fell to Hampton in the MEAC semifinals and accepted a bid to the CollegeInsider.com Tournament, where they lost at Liberty in the opening round.
GOPHERS VS. THE MEAC
• Minnesota has amassed a record of 9-0 against the current membership of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.
• Included in that mark are records against the following schools: Bethune-Cookman (4-0); Coppin State (1-0); Howard (1-0); Maryland-Eastern Shore (2-0); Morgan State (1-0);
• The Gophers have not faced a MEAC team in the Richard Pitino era, and not since a 94-64 victory over Morgan State on Dec. 8, 2009.
• Pitino did face a pair of MEAC foes during his one season as head coach at Florida International, earning wins over Florida A&M and Bethune-Cookman.
• This is the first meeting between the Gophers and the Aggies.
• The Gophers will enjoy the holidays before closing out the non-conference schedule at home on Sunday, December 30 as they host Mount St. Mary’s.
(info and photo courtesy of Gopher Sports)