Gopher WBB 2023-2024




bball_craz_31

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Depth.jpg

Here is the updated depth/roster for the upcoming season. I could see them run with this 13 or maybe try and add one more guard. Guessing would be Graduate addition as 12 of the 13 scholarships (barring transfer) will be back the following season.
 

Belzx009

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It’s nice to get a better feel of the roster. I think it will be fine either way. Fine if they add another, and fine just like this.
Very excited for the season
 


Ragnor

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If they add any more players I hope they are transfers with 1 year of eligability and they red shirt 1 or 2 of the freshman.
 

MaxyJR1

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If they add any more players I hope they are transfers with 1 year of eligability and they red shirt 1 or 2 of the freshman.
Isn't 13 the limit? They can have 2-3 walk-ons in addition to 13 scholarships. I think we have a full roster.
 







GringaGopher

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View attachment 25343

Here is the updated depth/roster for the upcoming season. I could see them run with this 13 or maybe try and add one more guard. Guessing would be Graduate addition as 12 of the 13 scholarships (barring transfer) will be back the following season.
Thanks for putting this roster together. I am concerned who is going to sub in for Hart but I am also hopeful we will be able to play occasional small ball with success.
 

Chico Gopher

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The thing that jumped out to me is how this is still a very young team. The good news is that the core sophomore group managed to get a lot of game-time under their belts last season. Hopefully the experience and a new coach will help eliminate some of the youthful mistakes that cost them games last season.

I'm honestly curious about what Holloway and Zie can provide, especially on defense and will Klick be able to get some playing time and be any kind of difference-maker as a freshman. Not expecting anything close to a title run, but am really looking forward to seeing a better team this year.
 



Gopheritnow

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The thing that jumped out to me is how this is still a very young team. The good news is that the core sophomore group managed to get a lot of game-time under their belts last season. Hopefully the experience and a new coach will help eliminate some of the youthful mistakes that cost them games last season.

I'm honestly curious about what Holloway and Zie can provide, especially on defense and will Klick be able to get some playing time and be any kind of difference-maker as a freshman. Not expecting anything close to a title run, but am really looking forward to seeing a better team this year.
Yes these freshmen got all that experience under the same coach who is excoriated here daily, still! Next year if they develop as hoped and expected, I am sure the rational posters on here will acknowledge the lumps taken to get that improvement? Yah, right!
 



Roland Brooks

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Yes these freshmen got all that experience under the same coach who is excoriated here daily, still! Next year if they develop as hoped and expected, I am sure the rational posters on here will acknowledge the lumps taken to get that improvement? Yah, right!
Lol… there was so much love for Whalen on this board after she was asked to step down I thought she died instead of lost her job..

She deserved the criticism the team had no direction… and her poor coaching didn’t start last year with that freshman class it was ongoing… Will you acknowledge she sucked as a coach?
 

Gopheritnow

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Lol… there was so much love for Whalen on this board after she was asked to step down I thought she died instead of lost her job..

She deserved the criticism the team had no direction… and her poor coaching didn’t start last year with that freshman class it was ongoing… Will you acknowledge she sucked as a coach?
No!
 

Roland Brooks

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She was a legend who was asked to step down because she was a below average coach… with her legendary status IF she was an average coach she would still be coach… so.. YES!
 

rwlarson

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Lol… there was so much love for Whalen on this board after she was asked to step down I thought she died instead of lost her job..

She deserved the criticism the team had no direction… and her poor coaching didn’t start last year with that freshman class it was ongoing… Will you acknowledge she sucked as a coach?
Lindsay had plenty of time to show that she had the program moving in the right direction, with an established identity and style of play that would be attractive to top high school players who wanted to learn from one of the greatest. Yet after several years in charge, the only traits all of her teams seemed to exhibit fairly consistently were a penchant for turnovers and poor team defense.

But I totally get the reasoning behind the hire. It was worth the gamble, certainly, to see if she could be a successful coach, because any other hire — unless wildly successful almost immediately — would certainly fall under her considerably long shadow as her WNBA career drew to a close. Being the local legend that she is, it was only natural for fans to want her to once again to lead the program back to the lofty heights it seemed were only possible with her as the face of the program.

I am confident that we now have a coach who will make this program attractive to all the talented local and regional players this part of the country churns out year after year.
 
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BigTenGuy

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. . . I am confident that we now have a coach who will make this program attractive to all the talented local and regional players this part of the country churns out year after year.
I am a fan of the Coach P hire, but I would pump the brakes on her flipping the recruiting script to the point where Minnesota is commonly attractive to the local/regional McDonald's All American types that routinely shun the Gophers. If she succeeds to that level, she would be the best recruiter in the region since Vivian Stringer.

If I have my list right, the last six McDonald's AAs from Minnesota (Tessa Johnson, Maya Nnaji, Paige Bueckers, Rebekah Dahlman, Nia Coffey, Tayler Hill) all went elsewhere. Olivia Olson is a likely 2024 McDonald's AA selection, and she has committed to Michigan. 2025 will be the first real test for Coach P and, at this point, Aaliyah Crump looks like she might be on track to be a McDonald's AA level recruit.

The Gophers are not alone in struggling to attract local/regional McDonald's AA talent, though Iowa and Iowa State have had some success. Wisconsin's last 4 McDonald's AAs (Kamorea Arnold, Lexi Donarski, Arike Ogunbowale, and Sam Logic) all went out of state, though Logic and Donarski did commit to Iowa and Iowa State. Next year's likely McDonald's AA (Allie Ziebell) has already committed to UCONN.

Iowa obviously hit the home run with Caitlin Clark, but missed this year on Sahara Williams (McDonald's AA from Iowa), who could have really helped an otherwise weak Iowa recruiting class. Before Clark, the last Iowa McDonald's AA from Iowa was Kiah Stokes, daughter of Iowa MBB player Greg Stokes, and she turned down Iowa to go to UCONN.

Finally, the Gophers (and Iowa, Iowa State, Nebraska) struck out on recent top 25-35 national recruits from the Dakotas (Lauren Ware and Ndjakalenga Mwenentanda).
 

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rwlarson

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I am a fan of the Coach P hire, but I would pump the brakes on her flipping the recruiting script to the point where Minnesota is commonly attractive to the local/regional McDonald's All American types that routinely shun the Gophers. If she succeeds to that level, she would be the best recruiter in the region since Vivian Stringer.

If I have my list right, the last six McDonald's AAs from Minnesota (Tessa Johnson, Maya Nnaji, Paige Bueckers, Rebekah Dahlman, Nia Coffey, Tayler Hill) all went elsewhere. Olivia Olson is a likely 2024 McDonald's AA selection, and she has committed to Michigan. 2025 will be the first real test for Coach P and, at this point, Aaliyah Crump looks like she might be on track to be a McDonald's AA level recruit.

The Gophers are not alone in struggling to attract local/regional McDonald's AA talent, though Iowa and Iowa State have had some success. Wisconsin's last 4 McDonald's AAs (Kamorea Arnold, Lexi Donarski, Arike Ogunbowale, and Sam Logic) all went out of state, though Logic and Donarski did commit to Iowa and Iowa State. Next year's likely McDonald's AA (Allie Ziebell) has already committed to UCONN.

Iowa obviously hit the home run with Caitlin Clark, but missed this year on Sahara Williams (McDonald's AA from Iowa), who could have really helped an otherwise weak Iowa recruiting class. Before Clark, the last Iowa McDonald's AA from Iowa was Kiah Stokes, daughter of Iowa MBB player Greg Stokes, and she turned down Iowa to go to UCONN.

Finally, the Gophers (and Iowa, Iowa State, Nebraska) struck out on recent top 25-35 national recruits from the Dakotas (Lauren Ware and Ndjakalenga Mwenentanda).
Landing that caliber of player consistently is the long game. I certainly don’t expect Coach P to do that out of the gate. Those players will always have reasons to want to play at established national brands under legendary coaches.

However, a coach who knows what type of player she wants and who will fit into what she wants to do offensively and defensively, can do quite well with several players in the next tier and even some role players outside the Top 150 if she can get them to mesh together and play true team basketball.

This is what I think Coach P can do that Lindsay could not.

Consistent NCAA appearances for 2-3 years would be a start. Then a breakthrough year with a very deep NCAA run, while maintaining those consistent NCAA appearances after the breakout. In time, if Dawn does that, the top one or two players in the state and region will look a lot more closely at coming here over the traditional powers, because they will be able to realistically see themselves being the difference between an occasional Sweet 16 team and a Final 4 team.
 

60's Guy

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Landing that caliber of player consistently is the long game. I certainly don’t expect Coach P to do that out of the gate. Those players will always have reasons to want to play at established national brands under legendary coaches.

However, a coach who knows what type of player she wants and who will fit into what she wants to do offensively and defensively, can do quite well with several players in the next tier and even some role players outside the Top 150 if she can get them to mesh together and play true team basketball.

This is what I think Coach P can do that Lindsay could not.

Consistent NCAA appearances for 2-3 years would be a start. Then a breakthrough year with a very deep NCAA run, while maintaining those consistent NCAA appearances after the breakout. In time, if Dawn does that, the top one or two players in the state and region will look a lot more closely at coming here over the traditional powers, because they will be able to realistically see themselves being the difference between an occasional Sweet 16 team and a Final 4 team.
It seems to me...in general...the elite players of today don't want to be alone. They want to join other elite players and make a super team. Then you have the next level kids who are not recruited by the U Conns, Stanfords, LSU's who accept they are going to have to work harder/smarter and do it the hard way.
Exceptions to everything but it's probably that second group that is coming to Minnesota unless it is a legacy connection or some other circumstance.
Coaching is a very big part of any chance to become a Top 10 type program...establishing that is years out and elusive.
 

bball_craz_31

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I am a fan of the Coach P hire, but I would pump the brakes on her flipping the recruiting script to the point where Minnesota is commonly attractive to the local/regional McDonald's All American types that routinely shun the Gophers. If she succeeds to that level, she would be the best recruiter in the region since Vivian Stringer.

If I have my list right, the last six McDonald's AAs from Minnesota (Tessa Johnson, Maya Nnaji, Paige Bueckers, Rebekah Dahlman, Nia Coffey, Tayler Hill) all went elsewhere. Olivia Olson is a likely 2024 McDonald's AA selection, and she has committed to Michigan. 2025 will be the first real test for Coach P and, at this point, Aaliyah Crump looks like she might be on track to be a McDonald's AA level recruit.

The Gophers are not alone in struggling to attract local/regional McDonald's AA talent, though Iowa and Iowa State have had some success. Wisconsin's last 4 McDonald's AAs (Kamorea Arnold, Lexi Donarski, Arike Ogunbowale, and Sam Logic) all went out of state, though Logic and Donarski did commit to Iowa and Iowa State. Next year's likely McDonald's AA (Allie Ziebell) has already committed to UCONN.

Iowa obviously hit the home run with Caitlin Clark, but missed this year on Sahara Williams (McDonald's AA from Iowa), who could have really helped an otherwise weak Iowa recruiting class. Before Clark, the last Iowa McDonald's AA from Iowa was Kiah Stokes, daughter of Iowa MBB player Greg Stokes, and she turned down Iowa to go to UCONN.

Finally, the Gophers (and Iowa, Iowa State, Nebraska) struck out on recent top 25-35 national recruits from the Dakotas (Lauren Ware and Ndjakalenga Mwenentanda).
I would like to add some context to that list of 6 Mcdons AA from Minnesota. More Specifically the 2022 class and McDonalds AA Nnaji. If you were in the know of High School and AAU, you would know the Gophers actually did get the better players than the one who was picked as the All-American.

Nnaji had a strong sophomore year AAU season and jumped up national rankings and shot up the state ranking to #1. Now I'm not say Nnaji isn't good...but I would 10000% say Mara Braun and Mallory Heyer were better players by the time it got to senior year. However there is a lot of politics that go into rankings both locally and politically and basically once she was up there, it was extremely difficult to see her move down.

So in terms of 2022 class. The Gopher got the best players, both on the court, and people off the court with the four players they got.
 

MOGopher

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Lol… there was so much love for Whalen on this board after she was asked to step down I thought she died instead of lost her job..

She deserved the criticism the team had no direction… and her poor coaching didn’t start last year with that freshman class it was ongoing… Will you acknowledge she sucked as a coach?
umm..ya know..ummm. yea
 

BigTenGuy

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I would like to add some context to that list of 6 Mcdons AA from Minnesota. More Specifically the 2022 class and McDonalds AA Nnaji. If you were in the know of High School and AAU, you would know the Gophers actually did get the better players than the one who was picked as the All-American.

Nnaji had a strong sophomore year AAU season and jumped up national rankings and shot up the state ranking to #1. Now I'm not say Nnaji isn't good...but I would 10000% say Mara Braun and Mallory Heyer were better players by the time it got to senior year.
Braun very easily could have been a McDonald’s AA, as could Rachel Banham.
 


adamj95

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As said last week, I think today’s preview starts a new tier of teams in the Big Ten. While I don’t necessarily anticipate NCAA Tournament bids from these next couple of teams, there is a lot more to be excited for with them this season, as well as beyond, and I would not count out postseason play for any of them.

This team in particular, I feel I may have a lot to say about as far as high ceilings go.
 


SHGopher

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This is the roster with player positions listed as-of today. It's unclear to me where or how some players will play -- meaning I'm interested to see how the team looks and evolves over the season.


I've roughly sorted them from 5 to 1 -- except I don't know for sure:

C Sophie Hart 5

C/F Aminata Zie 5

F Ayianna Johnson 5

F Mallory Heyer 4

F Niamya Holloway 4?

F McKynnlie Dalan stretch-4?

G Maggie Czinano 3 (and versatile to the 4 despite the "G" designation)

G/F Grace Grocholski 3 (I assume G/F means wing)

G/F Ajok Madol 3

G Janay Sanders 2 and 3 in 3 guard starting line-up -- or even 1

G Mara Braun 2

G Kennedy Klick 1 and sometimes 2

G Amaya Battle 1

G Brynn Senden 1



5 = center/post, 4 = power forward/post/stretch 4, 3 = wing/small forward/3rd guard/versatile other, 2 = shooting guard, 1 = point guard
 




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