Oklahoma State vs Minnesota Basketball Preview and Prediction
Oklahoma State vs Minnesota Preview
Date: Friday, November 30, 2018
Time: 10:00 p.m. ET
Location: Minneapolis, Minn.
Arena: U.S. Bank Stadium (20,000 – basketball)
TV: BTN – Cory Provus (Play-by-Play); Shon Morris (Analyst)
Oklahoma State earned a third-place finish at the AdvoCare Invitational thanks to a 90-77 win over No. 19 LSU on Sunday, and has now won five of its last six matchups against ranked opponents.
The Minnesota men’s basketball team returns to the Twin Cities for a neutral-court matchup with Oklahoma State Friday night in the inaugural U.S. Bank Stadium Basketball Classic. It is the first of a two-year neutral-site series, with a game at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla., slated for 2019.
Players to Watch for OSU
Cameron McGriff: 17.2 points, 7 rebounds, 1.3 assists
Yor Anei: 5.7 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.5 blocks
Thomas Dziagwa: 12.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists
Watching this Oklahoma State team up-close and personal at the AdvoCare Invitational, I developed a crush on Mike Boynton’s team. He has a mix of experienced players, size and sharp-shooters throughout his lineup.
The three players mentioned above will be key to the Cowboys success this season, but also three that you need to watch in this matchup.
McGriff does it all for the Cowboys. He’s the leader on the court and can impact the game in a multitude of ways. A double-double machine, McGriff will take over when his team is struggling, and facilitate the offense when others around him are hot.
Anei is a raw, but talented player. The 6-10 freshman with the 7’0 1/2″ wing span blocked six shots in the win over Memphis, which set a new AdvoCare Invitational record, tied for the most ever by an OSU freshman and are the most by any Cowboy since Andre Williams in 2003. Anei is tied for the Big 12 lead with 2.5 blocks per game, which ranks 22nd nationally. Anei has exactly half of OSU’s 30 team blocks, and if Anei was a team by himself he would rank 267th in the NCAA in blocks.
Dziagwa is a sharp-shooter plain and simple. He ranks ninth nationally with a 59.5 percent clip from 3-point. His 3.67 makes per game is tied for 23rd nationally, and KenPom ranks Dziagwa fourth nationally in “true shooting percentage”. Dziagwa is 28th among all active players with a 42.4 career 3-point mark.
Players to Watch Minnesota
Jordan Murphy: 14.3 points, 12.2 rebounds, 3.7 assists
Gabe Kalscheur: 13.5 points, 2.8 rebounds, 55% from three-point
Senior forward Jordan Murphy has earned some impressive accolades leading into the start of the season. The San Antonio, Texas native was a Preseason All-Big Ten Team selection as well as named to the Naismith Trophy, John Wooden Award and Lute Olson Award watch lists for top college basketball player in the nation, as well as the Karl Malone Award watch list for the top power forward in the country.
Murphy became the program’s all-time leading rebounder on Nov. 20 in the win over Santa Clara. Murphy passed Mychal Thompson‘s record of 956 which stood for more than 30 years. He stands at 983 rebounds. Murphy also has 50 career double-doubles (including five this year), needing one more to tie Jim Brewer‘s school record of 51.
Guard Gabe Kalscheur was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week on Monday. Last week, Kalscheur averaged 14 points, 2.7 rebounds and one steal per game, including a career-high 25 points in the win over Santa Clara. He also made the game-winning 3-pointer in the victory over Washington to claim the tournament championship.
LINE: -4 Minnesota
This will be a great battle and solid litmus test for both teams. The Cowboys have been tested early, and this matchup against the Gophers will be yet another test.
Both coaches will have their teams ready to play, but I like the Cowboys all-around weapons to do more especially in the second half as they not only cover the points, but win the game outright.
Oklahoma State 85 Minnesota 80
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