UL Men’s Basketball Opens Season At Minnesota – At A Glance
Louisiana’s Ragin’ Cajun men’s basketball team opens their 2016-2017 regular season schedule on Friday evening, when coach Bob Marlin squad is on the road to take on the Minnesota Golden Gophers in non-conference action.
Tipoff time at Williams Arena in Minneapolis, Minnesota is scheduled for 7 pm.
You can hear all the play-by-play action on Hot 107.9, and 1079ishot.com, beginning with the pre-game show at 6:30 pm.
Louisiana, who begins their 104th season of basketball play, went 19-15 last season, including a quarterfinal appearance in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament, the fourth time in the last five years that they've qualified for the postseason.
The Cajuns will be without the services of four players who played out their eligibility last season, including Shawn Long, who finished as the school's all-time leading rebounder, while pouring in 2,300 career points, Kasey Shepherd, who became the 43rd player in school history to reach the 1,000-point mark, Devonta Walker, who played in all 34 games a season ago, and Steven Wronkoski, who finished his career as the school's all-time leader in games played.
The Cajuns do return three starters from last year's squad, including senior point guard Jay Wright, who averaged 8.9 points-per-game last season, along with junior guard Johnathan Stove, who also averaged 8.9 points, and junior forward Bryce Washington, who averaged 8.7 points a contest, to go along with 5.7 rebounds.
Louisiana will also be relying on a host of talented newcomers, including guard Frank Bartley, who sat out last season, after playing the first two seasons of his collegiate career at Brigham Young.
Minnesota, who went 8-23 a season ago, will begin their fourth season under the direction of head coach Richard Pitino, the former head coach at FIU, who is the son of Louisville head coach Rick Pitino.
Key returning starters for the Golden Gophers this year include junior guard Nate Mason, who averaged 13.8 points-per-game last season, and sophomore forward Jordan Murphy, who was selected to the 2016 Big Ten All-Freshman Team, after averaging 11.6 points and 8.0 rebounds per game a year ago.
Louisiana, who will play 16 home games this season, including their first six at Blackham Coliseum, while renovations to the Cajundome are being completed, will officially tip off the season on Nov. 11 at Minnesota and will travel to face Montana State (Nov. 14) before opening its home schedule on Nov. 17 against Panhandle State.