I woke up Sunday morning confident about the Gophers chances. Then I had to watch Mississippi State win the Battle of who wanted to lose less to Tennessee. I started get to worried as both ESPN and CBS had the Gophers as one of the last four in. Then the show started and when Arizona was in I got even more nervous. Then Maryland was in as a 10 seed. Then a Wisconsin team that most had more in than the Gophers was a 12 seed. I thought for sure we were screwed. Then came the magical moment. The Gophers are the 10 seed in the East Bracket playing the 7 seed Texas. Thank God. Here is the Gophers' reaction. The game will be Thursday night at 6:10 PM, which means I will have to surf between the game and the hockey team's Final Five game against Minnesota-Duluth. My priority will definitely be the basketball game.
We made it to the tournament in Tubby's second season. We went from a 9 win team missing the NIT to a 22 win team in the NCAA tournament in two seasons. I think we all forget that sometimes. This team had to replace 32.7 ppg from an NIT team and turned it into an NCAA team. While not many tears where shed for the loss of Spencer Tollackson not many teams lose their top 3 scorers and improve the next year.
I will do a preview of the game later in the week but from here on out it is all gravy. The goal for this team was to make the tournament. It may have temporarily changed after the Louisville win and top 20 ranking but that was found to be fool's gold as the Gophers hit the road in the Big Ten. They came back to reality and so did the expectations. This team is supposed to just make the tournament for experience for next year which the expectations will be raised. We get at least one more game to watch the Gophers and we should enjoy it and reflect on all the excitement and intrigue they have given us this year and how bright the future is.