Sampson's ankle feeling better

It's still unclear if Ralph Sampson III will play Tuesday night when the Gophers host Appalachian State, but he was moving around much better during Monday's practice. The 6-foot-11 senior center has missed the last two games.
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It's still unclear if Ralph Sampson III will play Tuesday night when the Gophers host Appalachian State, but he was moving around much better during Monday's practice. The 6-foot-11 senior center has missed the last two games.

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Gophers could be without Sampson

The Gophers could be without starting big man Ralph Sampson III against Northwestern in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament on Thursday. Sampson injured his knee two days ago and hasn't practice since.

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Ralph Sampson III is back in the starting lineup tonight as the Gophers host Appalachian State in non-conference play at Williams Arena. Sampson missed the previous two games because of a turned ankle. Andre Hollins is also starting despite turning an ankle in Saturday's win over USC.

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With No. 6 Michigan State in town -- and a three-game losing streak threatening to sink the season -- Gophers coach Tubby Smith is asking veterans Ralph Sampson III and Andre Hollins to take more of a leadership role.

Reusse: Tubby Smith using Sampson as scapegoat

Star Tribune columnist Patrick Reusse says frustrated Gophers coach Tubby Smith wants Ralph Sampson III to go strong to the basket and not settle for jumpers -- even though that's never been his game.

Sampson and Hollins expected to start Saturday against St. Peter's

Both players are recovering from minor ankle injuries, but Ralph Sampson III and Andre Hollins are expected to start Saturday when the Gophers host St. Peter's. Sampson returned to action against Appalachian State, but Hollins left the game early and didn't return.

Ankle still bothering Ralph Sampson III

A twisted ankle is still bothering Gophers' center Ralph Sampson III. He missed Monday's win over Mount St. Mary's and did not participate in contact drills Wednesday. Tubby Smith isn't sure if Sampson will play Thursday against DePaul, but he's hoping he will play at some point during the Old Spice Classic.

Sampson III may not play against USC

University of Minnesota center Ralph Sampson III could miss his second consecutive game Saturday when the Gophers host USC. The senior center is still experiencing some soreness in his ankle. He missed Wednesday's win over Virginia Tech as well.

Sampson to start against LaSalle in NIT

Ralph Sampson will be back in the Gophers’ lineup Wednesday night when Minnesota takes on LaSalle in the opening round of the NIT tournament. Sampson sat out the Big 10 tournament last week with a sprained knee, but coach Tubby Smith tells the Pioneer Press his senior center “looks good.”