Series: First Meeting
Tubby Smith vs. Lafayette: First Meeting
Minnesota vs. Patriot League: 8-1
Loss: Navy (24-18) - Dec. 27, 1924
Tubby Smith vs. Patriot League: 5-0
Game Day Tid-Bits:
The Gophers and the Lafayette Leopards are meeting for the first time. Minnesota faced Lafayette's Patriot League rival American University in the season opener. Tubby Smith has not faced Lafayette as a head coach but holds a 5-0 record all-time against teams currently in the Patriot League.
With the win over USC on Dec. 8, Tubby Smith become the 19th current active D1 coach to reach the 500-win plateau. Oklahoma's Lon Kruger became the 18th coach to reach the mark, as he did so on Nov. 30 with a win over Northwestern State in Norman. Smith is the 24th fastest coach to reach the milestone, having done so in 714 career games.
Smith currently has 114 wins on the bench at Minnesota, the seventh-most in the history of the program and five shy of passing Dan Monson for sixth on the list. He also holds the fourth-highest winning percentage in team history at .622 (114-69). L.J. Cooke sits atop the Gophers' win list with 250 wins in 28 seasons.
Trevor Mbakwe collected his 25th career double-double against North Dakota State on Dec. 11 with 14 points and a career-high 18 rebounds in 21 minutes. It was the highest rebounding game for a Gopher since Dusty Rychart also grabbed 18 boards on Feb. 23, 2000 at Seton Hall. Joel Przybilla also collected 18 rebounds that season, Jan. 12, 2000 against Iowa.
Former Gopher Larry Mikan holds the Minnesota record for rebounds in a game with 28 against Michigan during the 1969-70 season. Seven Gophers are tied for 8th on that list with 20 rebounds in a game, but it hasn't been done since Richard Coffey grabbed 20 against Grambling State on Dec. 30, 1987.
Andre Hollins on Cousy Award Watch List:
Sophomore Andre Hollins has been named to the Bob Cousy Award watch list. The award is given annually to the nation's top men's basketball point guard.
Heis one of 80 players across the country to be named to the watch list, which will be narrowed down to a final 20 in early January.
Previous winners of the Bob Cousy Award have included Jameer Nelson (St. Joseph's), Raymond Felton (North Carolina), Dee Brown (Illinois), Acie Law (Texas A & M), DJ Augustin (Texas), Ty Lawson (North Carolina), Greivis Vasquez (Maryland), Kemba Walker (Connecticut) and last year's recipient Kendall Marshall (North Carolina). For more information on the 2013 Bob Cousy, log onto www.CousyAward.com.
Senior Trevor Mbakwe is averaging 18.3 minutes per game this season, as he continues his comeback from major knee surgery last season.
Despite it being less than a year since surgery (Dec. 30, 2011), Mbakwe has given Tubby Smith and the his teammates quality minutes through 12 games this season.
He will head into the non-conference finale averaging 9.2 ppg - fifth highest on the team - a team-high 7.4 rpg & 1.3 bpg.
According to ESPN's Jon Hollinger's Player Efficiency Ratings, Mbakwe is 16th in the nation and third in the B1G. Of the top-16 ranked by Hollinger, Mbakwe is the only one that is not averaging at least 20.0 minutes per game.
Mbakwe's Top Efficiency Moments this Season:
6 pts & 7 rbs in 14 minutes against American
11 pts & 3 rbs in 18 minutes against Duke
5 pts & 8 rbs in 20 minutes against Memphis
19 pts & 12 rbs in 24 minutes against Stanford
11 pts & 6 rbs in 11 minutes against North Florida
8 pts & 10 rbs in 14 minutes against South Dakota State
14 pts & 18 rbs in 21 minutes against North Dakota State
Tubby Gains Career Win No. 500:
With the victory over Southern California on Dec. 8, Gopher head coach Tubby Smith became the 19th member of the 500 career club. The Gophers defeated NDSU on Dec. 11 for Smith's 501st win.
Smith became just the eighth coach in Minnesota history to win 100 games with a victory over La Salle in the opening round of the 2012 NIT. He now sits with 114 wins on the Gopher sideline, five wins shy of passing Dan Monson on the Gophers' win list.
Smith holds the fourth-highest winning percentage in Minnesota history.
Smith has led Minnesota to the post season in four of his five seasons.