Gophers top Illinois to continue roll entering big game at Purdue

Minnesota has won three of four with their only loss on a buzzer beater.
Publish date:

We'll spare you the "it was freezing outside but red-hot inside" commentary, but that's sort of what it was for the Gophers as they exacted revenged with an 86-75 win over Illinois on Wednesday night. 

Minnesota started out slow on a night when it was -20F outside Williams Arena and actually trailed 39-37 at the half, but a balanced scoring attack fueled the Gophers to a big second half in which they outscored Illinois 49-36. 

Amir Coffey led five Gophers in double figures with 18 points and six assists. Jordan Murphy scored 16 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for his 14th double-double of the season, which is tied with South Dakota State star Mike Daum for the second-most in Division I men's basketball

Isaiah Washington scored 12 points off the bench and true freshmen Gabe Kalscheur (14 points) and Daniel Oturu (11 points, eight rebounds) each contributed key minutes. It was Oturu's first game off the bench after sitting out with an injury in Minnesota's win over Iowa on Sunday. 

The Gophers (16-5 overall, 6-4 Big Ten) have now won three of four and their only loss came at the buzzer to sixth-ranked Michigan. Minnesota has a huge conference game at No. 17 Purdue (14-6 overall, 7-2 Big Ten) on Sunday. 

A win at Purdue would be huge for Minnesota's NCAA Tournament hopes. The Gophers already have three wins who are/were ranked when they played: Iowa, Wisconsin, Nebraska, not to mention a win over Pac-12 leader Washington. 

The official attendance of the Gophers-Illinois game was 9,565, which isn't half bad considering how cold it was outside. 

Next Up

closed sign

What's open and closed in Minnesota on MLK Day 2021?

Local government offices will generally be closed on Monday.

BMTN 900x450 (8)

Company that falsely promised student loan forgiveness banned from MN

It's also been ordered to repay $11,499 in fees taken from Minnesotans.

covid-19, coronavirus

Here is Minnesota's COVID update for January 15

Hospitalizations are the lowest in Minnesota since October 25.


Osterholm: B117 COVID strain could become major issue in 6-8 weeks

The B117 variant is believed to be more easily transmitted.

General Mills

General Mills halts donations to Republicans who voted to block Biden win

Two Minnesota representatives voted against certification of results in Arizona and Pennsylvania.

overturned semi truck

Winter storm creates whiteout conditions, closing roads and causing crashes

Roads in southwestern Minnesota were closed early Friday, while slippery conditions elsewhere in the state led to crashes and spinouts.


Hennepin Theatre Trust announces 2021-22 Broadway schedule

Health and safety protocols will be in place based on state guidance.

Tim Walz

Walz to hold press conference on MN State Capitol safety concerns

This comes amid ongoing threats to state Capitols across the country.


Marcus Carr

Gophers buckle down for big win over Penn State

Bring Me The News' Mathew Goldstein has the details.

Screen Shot 2020-01-03 at 8.06.40 AM

Gophers lose double-overtime battle at Purdue

Daniel Oturu had another monster game for the Gophers.

Daniel Oturu

Oturu, Carr lead Gophers to win over Northwestern

Daniel Oturu earned his ninth double-double of the season.

Pitino aims to snap 8-game losing streak against Wisconsin

The Gophers are 0-8 against the Badgers under Richard Pitino.

Jordan Murphy

Gophers add to tourney résumé with blowout win over Indiana

The win snapped a four-game losing streak for the tourney-hopeful Gophers.

Richard Pitino

Gophers silence rumors with contract extension for Pitino

Pitino is now under contract through the end of the 2023-24 season.

Coffey, Stockman lead Gophers over #11 Purdue

Amir Coffey scored 32 points and was clutch at the free-throw line.

Gophers upset No. 22 Wisconsin with suffocating defense

Wisconsin made just 7-of-17 free throws in the game.