With Maurice Walker and Elliott Eliason graduating, and transfer Reggie Lynch not eligible until next season, the Minnesota Golden Gophers men’s basketball was already looking thin on big men heading into the 2015-16 season. Sophomore center Bakary Konate is in line to start, but he will now miss a month with a stress fracture in his foot.
Pssst: Gophers’ 6-11 sophomore basketball center Bakary Konate will miss a month after suffering stress fracture in foot in practice.
— Charley Walters (@Charley_Walters) October 13, 2015
Minnesota will play two exhibition games on Nov. 1 and Nov. 6 before opening the season at home against Missouri-Kansas City on Nov. 13. Under the aforementioned timetable Konate may only miss that first game, and it seems fairly certain he’ll make the trip with the team to San Juan for the Puerto Rico Tip-Off that starts on Nov. 19.
The Golden Gophers only have one other eligible center on the roster, sophomore Gaston Diedhiou, who averaged less than a point and a rebound per game last season over 5.2 minutes per game. So getting Konate back as soon as possible would be ideal, but the lingering nature of foot injuries for big men makes a smaller lineup a virtual certainty for Richard Pitino.