The Minnesota Golden Gophers had struggled with depth all season long and those problems came to a head during a loss to Penn State in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament.
The Gophers' depth was cut even shorter prior to the game when E.J. Stephens battled migraines and the flu before tip-off. While Stephens was able to be on the bench, the Gophers were limited to their five starters for a majority of the game.
Jamison Battle led the charge for Minnesota, putting up 19 points on the night. By shooting 7-for-16 on the night, Battle led the Gophers to a 28-24 lead at halftime.
But while Battle shot well, it didn't translate to his teammates. Minnesota shot just 35 percent on the night and 5-for-19 (26.3 percent) from beyond the arc. With Ben Johnson not making a substitution until just under four minutes to play, the Gophers began to run out of gas.
The Nittany Lions capitalized off the Gophers' fatigue to pull away late. Jalen Pickett put up 22 points and seven rebounds to lead the way and Penn State sent the Gophers to an early exit.
The loss wraps up Johnson's first season as head coach with a record of 13-17.