STrib: Gophers men's basketball scheduling harder than ever because 'nobody tells you the truth'


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Nov 11, 2008
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Per Randy:

The art of scheduling nonconference opponents in men's college basketball can be nearly as important as coaching and recruiting.

The process is headache-inducing for coaches, who want to make sure their teams are stacking early season victories while also getting tested and prepared for their conference slates.

"It's as complicated now as recruiting almost," said Gophers coach Ben Johnson, whose team plays Texas-San Antonio on Friday at Williams Arena.

Johnson relies on his director of basketball, Ryan Livingston, to handle one of the most overlooked and difficult tasks in the profession. The Gophers have their highest number of nonconference home games in seven years with 10 this season, including Monday's opening win vs. Bethune-Cookman.

Depending on where a program is in development, a really tough schedule can pile up losses. A soft schedule can lead to more wins but a weak resume. The best schedulers find balance. They can help test teams just enough to prepare them for conference play.

But finding marquee opponents can be difficult, especially for the Gophers.

Go Gophers!!

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