Elliott Eliason gingerly strolled through the Bierman Field Athletic Building on Saturday afternoon with his left foot in a walking boot.
Eliason turned his left ankle in practice Thursday when he came down on it awkwardly, head coach Richard Pitino said.
Eliason wasn’t practicing as of Saturday, but Pitino said he doesn’t think the injury is as bad as the ankle sprain junior guard Andre Hollins sustained in the middle of the season, which caused him to miss two games.
DeAndre Mathieu used to play for Southern Miss head coach Donnie Tyndall.
The Gophers looked poised to lethargically step aside and bow out of the National Invitation Tournament on Sunday afternoon.
Minnesota fell behind 14-0 to St. Mary’s in the second round of the NIT at Williams Arena and showed no sign of resurgence.
No one could really blame the Gophers for bowing out. They had come close to reaching their ultimate goal — the NCAA tournament — before being snubbed last Sunday. They had already won their first-round game against High Point. There wasn’t a lot of shame of losing in a second round.
Minnesota needed two wins over Penn State in a five day span — no one doubted that.
And the Gophers, who have been so up-and-down this season, delivered two solid performances to do just that — the second a 63-56 win over the Nittany Lions in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament.
“We found a way to get it done,” head coach Richard Pitino said. “ We found a way to get stops when we needed to, make big plays when we needed to.”
Minnesota likely needs one more win to earn an NCAA Tournament berth.
DeAndre Mathieu no longer wanted to play basketball.
He was a walk-on freshman at Morehead State who played sparingly and wasn’t making much of an impact. What pushed him away, though, was far graver than those things.
In the middle of his freshman season, Mathieu’s best friend Phillip “Tookie” Stanford committed suicide, rocking Mathieu’s world. He missed three games when he went home for the funeral, but it could have been more.