Gophers' Pitino: '100 percent yes' we met expectations


Minnesota Golden Gophers men's basketball coach Richard Pitino is looking forward to brighter days ahead, but that doesn't mean he views at his first season at the U of M as a disappointment.

Despite missing the NCAA tournament, Pitino wrote in a blog post Monday at GopherSports.com that his team met expectations.

Did this year meet expectations? That is the most commonly asked question that I have received since our NIT championship. The answer would be 100 percent yes. As a coach your hope is that your guys compete and get better every day. I can honestly say 99 percent of our practices and individual instruction sessions were a success. The guys brought it every day and that's all you can ask.

The Gophers won the National Invitation Tournament championship, finishing the season with 25 wins. Along the way, Minnesota played a top 10 strength of schedule, which Pitino said "next year's schedule will be more difficult than this year's."

Pitino handed out unofficial team awards, too. He gave the Most Valuable Player nod to point guard DeAndre Mathieu.

"Nobody was more consistent from top to bottom than Dre," Pitino wrote of Mathieu. "Incredible where he has come from to get to where he is now. He certainly deserves all the credit. He will also have to stay hungry because he will have a bigger reputation next season."

  • Most Improved: Mo Walker
  • Best Defender: Austin Hollins
  • Hardest Worker: Austin Hollins (Pitino called this an "easy pick")
  • Best Attitude: Maverick Ahanmisi
  • Sacrifice Award: Oto Osenieks

Next Up

Merwin Liquors

Liquor store that has become shooting hotspot seeking to move

The area surrounding Merwin's Liquors has been beset by crime in recent years.

Mohamed Noor

Ex-Minneapolis cop Noor resentenced to 57 months in prison

Justine Ruszczyk Damond's fiancé said he forgives Noor.

Anthony Edwards

Anthony Edwards was right: he is Houdini and his bag of tricks is incredible

Edwards put the entire league on notice with his season-opening performance.

Bob Fletcher

New 'public service' charter school backed by Ramsey Co. Sheriff to open

Efforts to open the school were spearheaded in part by Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher.

covid-19 testing site sign

Minnesota to offer free COVID rapid testing at 9 more sites

Three new rapid testing sites opened in Minnesota this week.


Elvis Costello cancels Mystic Lake show, will play vax-requiring First Ave instead

Those who bought tickets to Mystic Lake will be refunded, and need to buy new tickets.


23 Minnesotans infected with salmonella linked to onions

Four of Minnesota residents were hospitalized. None have died.

Anthony Edwards

Timberwolves smash Rockets in season opener

The Timberwolves showed they have plenty of firepower in a victory over Houston.

Knuth - Nezhad - side by side

Frey challengers Knuth, Nezhad agree to rank each other 2nd

They're urging supporters to do the same on Nov. 2.

Jerome Horton - Sherburne Co. Jail - CROP

Charges: Man lied to buy gun later used by St. Paul mass shooting suspect

He's accused of making false statements during the purchase of a firearm.