Redskins

No. 21 Minnesota beats North Florida 87-59

201212011550570028840-p2.jpeg

No. 21 Minnesota beats North Florida 87-59

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) North Florida coach Matthew Driscoll knows that the loss to No. 21 Minnesota will help his team later in the season in Atlantic Sun Conference play.

Driscoll said the Ospreys wouldn't face another team as physical as the Gophers, so he offered a different point of view about Saturday's 87-59 loss, stating the games are more important for the individual matchups than the team.

His prime example: junior forward Travis Wallace.

Wallace - making his fifth straight start - scored eight of North Florida's first 16 points as the Osprey's took an early lead against Minnesota. Wallace finished with a season-high 17 points on 7 of 10 shooting and had six rebounds in Saturday's loss, continuing his development as a key starter for North Florida.

``We talked about this the other day privately,'' Driscoll said. ``He's an all-league player and he has the ability to be an all-league player. And when he plays within himself, and he plays within our system, he's an all-league player. Just sometimes, like all kids, sometimes they get out of doing things at certain times and other teams figure things out. You got to be able to fight through that.''

Parker Smith added a team-high 22 points for the Ospreys (3-5), but a season-high 22 turnovers and season-low 35.1 percent shooting doomed North Florida, which had won back-to-back games. The Ospreys were playing without guard Jerron Granberry, who has missed three games since the death of his father, and forward Andy Diaz, who has missed four games with a leg injury.

Diaz's injury opened the door for Wallace to start and Driscoll believes starting has helped Wallace's game grow. He's scored in double-figures in five straight games and adds an interior presence for a team that relies on 3-point shooting. Perhaps playing against the bigger, more physical Gophers will add to Wallace's progression.

Sunday he was matched up often with Minnesota's Trevor Mbakwe, an athletic 6-foot-8, 245-pound big man who was named to the preseason Lute Olson All-America team. Mbakwe scored 11 points, had six rebounds and three blocks.

``It's just not him, whoever you play you've got to come out there and give it your all,'' Wallace said. ``You got to be physical with them. People at this level, they're all physical, they're all big. You got to find the angles. It's not really who you're playing, its really what you do.''

But Minnesota's physicality was an issue for North Florida. Rodney Williams scored 15 points and had eight rebounds, and Austin Hollins added 12 points for the Gophers (8-1), winners of four straight. Minnesota outrebounded the Ospreys 48-35, including 25 offensive rebounds for the Gophers.

``We really struggled with their physicality,'' Driscoll said, later adding: ``Our room for error in playing these kinds of games is very small. But these guys know that. It isn't like this is the first time they've ever played a ranked team or whatever. It's not like this is new to us, and that's part that struggles for me as a coach because I believe we can win every single game.''

After hitting its first five attempts of the game, the Ospreys made just five shots on 23 shooting the rest of the first half as the Gophers forced tough looks and 11 North Florida turnovers in the first 20 minutes. Minnesota trailed 18-10 with 11:45 to play in the half, but followed with a 20-3 burst that included a 7 1/2-minute scoreless stretch for the Ospreys. Six of the eight field goals during the Gophers' run were layups or dunks.

``The thing that we struggle with is when a team raises its intensity to another level,'' Driscoll said. ``I don't know what their run was, but it seemed like we were stuck on 21 for six, seven minutes.''

Smith connected on just 6 of 19 attempts, including a 3-for-11 mark from the 3-point line.

The Gophers blocked a season-high 13 shots, including a career-high four from Andre Hollins and three from Mbakwe. Minnesota also tied a season high with 15 steals.

Minnesota scored 16 points off turnovers in the first half and used its size advantage to grab 14 offensive rebounds turned into 13 points. The Gophers finished with a season-high 25 offensive boards, ultimately outscoring North Florida 54-24 in the paint.

``We just don't see this kind of girth at our level,'' Driscoll said.

Quick Links

Need to Know: Post-minicamp Redskins 53-man roster projection—Offense

roster_prediction_hero_image.png
Various sources

Need to Know: Post-minicamp Redskins 53-man roster projection—Offense

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, June 18, 38 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.  

Redskins 53-man roster projection—offense 

It may still be early to project the roster, but things are coming into focus after the round of practices in helmets and shorts. Here is my look at who I think will make it on offense; defense up tomorrow. 

Quarterbacks (2)
Alex Smith, Colt McCoy

I think that Kevin Hogan is very much on the bubble as the third quarterback. They got along with two QBs last year, and with Alex Smith having demonstrated great durability during his career, Hogan may well get bumped off. 

Running backs (4)
Derrius Guice, Chris Thompson, Samaje Perine, Rob Kelley

I’d say that this is 95 percent locked in. Maybe Kapri Bibbs or Byron Marshall can make a push for Kelley’s roster spot but his history with Jay Gruden will make it very hard for him to get knocked out. 

Wide receivers (6)
Josh Doctson, Paul Richardson, Jamison Crowder, Maurice Harris, Robert Davis, Trey Quinn

The first time I did this back in April I didn’t have Quinn on the roster. That was before he was a man among boys at rookie camp and a player who looks like he belongs when the veterans showed up. I don’t know if he’ll have the impact that many fans think he will, but he’s certainly going to get his chance. Brian Quick could steal a roster spot from Harris or Davis.

Tight ends (3)
Jordan Reed, Vernon Davis, Jeremy Sprinkle

The Redskins did not draft a tight end or sign one in free agency so there seems to be faith that Reed will be healthy. We’ve heard that before and it seems somewhat risky to leave Davis, who has Father Time nipping at his heels, and the inexperienced Davis as the only two backups. They may try to make room for an undrafted rookie like Hudson Garrett.  

Offensive line (9)
Trent Williams, Shawn Lauvao, Chase Roullier, Brandon Scherff, Morgan Moses, Ty Nsekhe, Geron Christian, Tyler Catalina, Tony Bergstrom

I think that Gruden is probably happy with the starters here but the depth is shaky, especially in the interior. The key could be whether Christian is ready for prime time as the swing tackle. That could allow Nsekhe to fill in at guard. Bergstrom is fine as the backup center, although I wouldn’t want to have to count on him for more than a few games. 

Offensive players: 24
Rookies (3):
Guice, Christian, Quinn
New to the organization in 2018 (5): Rookies plus Smith, Richardson 
Not on 2017 Week 1 roster (11): Rookies plus new plus Harris (practice squad), R. Davis (practice squad) and Bergstrom (not on the team). 

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter  @TandlerNBCSand on Instagram @RichTandler

Tandler on Twitter

An Indiana state police officer tweeted that he pulled a driver over for going too slowly in the left lane. I believe this person is a national hero. 

Timeline  

Days until:

—Training camp starts (7/26) 38
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 52
—Roster cut to 53 (9/1) 75

The Redskins last played a game 167 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 83 days. 

In case you missed it

Quick Links

Zach Brown says Redskins defense will 'have it out' for Terrelle Pryor during joint practices

brown_pryor_usat_ig.jpg
USA TODAY Sports/@TerrellePryor

Zach Brown says Redskins defense will 'have it out' for Terrelle Pryor during joint practices

Terrelle Pryor made a number of highlight reel catches last year during training camp, and it appears the Redskins defense didn't like it. 

Washington's marquee free agent signing last season, Pryor came into Richmond with sky-high expectations. Throughout the training sessions last August, Pryor put on one-handed displays at the Jugs machine and often made big catches in team drills. It's also important to remember there was never any live tackling during these drills, leaving defenders at a distinct disadvantage. 

Zach Brown remembers the scene quite well, and thinks it will look very different this summer when Pryor comes to Richmond as a member of the New York Jets. 

"That’s going to be something right there. The boys are gonna have it out for him. We can put hands on him now," Brown said on Inside the Locker Room on the Team 980 (full audio here).

Brown explained that Redskins coach Jay Gruden would not allow the defense to hit Pryor last year, even when the wideout did some showboating. 

"Jay ain't here to protect you anymore," Brown said.

The Redskins linebacker explained that he tried to explain to Pryor that the one-handed catches from training camp would not translate in the NFC East, where players get hit hard. It doesn't seem like Pryor listened, as he finished the season with only 240 receiving yards on 20 catches in nine games. 

"The boys were already hot for what he was doing last year," Brown said. He added, "Try to one-hand something while you’re with the Jets, you’re gonna catch a forearm."

One incident that supports Brown's comments came when Bashaud Breeland got thrown off the practice field last training camp. Breeland got mad that he wasn't allowed to get physical with Pryor at the line of scrimmage, and the scene blew up. Breeland eventually got sent off the field after arguing with coaches. 

The Jets visit the Redskins for three days of practices beginning August 12th. The two teams then square off in the second preseason game on August 16th. 

Brown will get his chance at Pryor, assuming the wideout plays. Pryor finished the 2018 season on the injured reserve, but is expected to be fine once training camp begins in New York. 

MORE REDSKINS NEWS:

#REDSKINSTALK PODCAST

Don't forget to subscribe to the #RedskinsTalk podcast, hosted by JP Finlay.

Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below.