Position Preview: Shooting Guard

Heading into the season, the shooting guard position looked like the most experienced of any for the Gophers. With the indefinite suspension of Devoe Joseph, the Gophers will lack the depth that they had anticipated. Despite this, fans can look for big things this year from Minnesota's shooting guards.

Starter:
Gopher fans should already be familiar with starting shooting guard Blake Hoffarber. Since his high school days, Hoffarber has been a star who has developed into one of the best shooters in the country for the Gophers.

Last season, he averaged 10 points, 3.6 assists and 1.8 assists to lead the Gophers by example. Hoffarber is best known for his lights out shooting from behind the arc. Last year he shot an amazing 46.7% from deep, ranking him first in the conference and 14th in the country in three-point field goal percentage.

The senior lefty has a sweet stroke and one of the quickest releases in the country. Hoffarber has already shown this during the Gophers exhibition games where he has made seven out of twelve shots from three.

Minnesota will look to his Hoffarber for an open three whenever possible this season which seems to be a good game plan. Gopher fans can expect huge things on from Hoffarber during his senior season.

Key Reserve:
The loss of Devoe Joseph will certainly hurt the Gophers while he is gone. Joseph proved to be one of the Gophers' best shooters, scoring 9.6 points per game last year while shooting 39.7% from deep which was good for eight best percentages in the Big Ten.

Because the return of Joseph seems to no time soon, Minnesota will need to find another player to step up and play well.

A youngster who could be looked at to fill the void is freshman Chip Armelin. At 6-foot-3, Armelin has good size for a shooting guard which will help the transition. Armelin uses his size to be a solid scorer on the offensive end.

He is good shooter from the outside, showing a pure stroke that he lets fly when he is open. As a senior in high school he averaged an impressive 23.5 points per game.

If given the opportunity, Armelin will need to use this scoring tendency to be a spark off the bench during the absence of Joseph.


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