Malik Smith can play this season for Minnesota
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Shooting guard Malik Smith will be able to play for Minnesota this season after coming from Florida International with coach Richard Pitino.
The university announced Wednesday that the NCAA approved a transfer waiver for the 6-foot-2 Smith, who will be a senior. He averaged 14.7 points and 2.7 rebounds last season for FIU while setting a school record with 96 made 3-pointers. He shot 36.2 percent from behind the arc.
Smith played at South Plains College as a freshman and for Jacksonville College as a sophomore.
Last month, FIU became ineligible for 2014 postseason play because of an insufficient Academic Progress Rate score, a factor in the NCAA's decision.
Pitino left FIU to take the Minnesota job in April after one season in charge there.
Gophers get game vs. Syracuse in Maui Invitational
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota will face another national power in a tropical November tournament.
The Gophers learned Wednesday they'll play Syracuse Nov. 25 in the Maui Invitational. Others in the eight-team field are Arkansas, California, host Chaminade, Baylor, Dayton and Gonzaga. The Gophers will also have games Nov. 26 and 27.
In the preliminary mainland portion of the tournament, which gives teams an extra nonconference game by NCAA rule, Minnesota will host Coastal Carolina Nov. 19.
The last time the Gophers met Syracuse was 1990, an 82-75 victory in the NCAA tournament regional semifinals. The Orange made the Final Four last season.
The Gophers are 13-5 over the last six years in regular-season tournaments. They lost to Duke last year before beating Memphis and Stanford in the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas.