College basketball's ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll was released today and it sports three Big Ten teams in the Top 25 and another two that received votes for the Top 25. The Minnesota Golden Gophers are not in that mix.
After the Gophers rised all the way to 11-1 and a No. 13 spot in the polls last year, Minnesota lost 13 of their next 19 games and found themselves on the outside looking in of March Madness. This year, they start where they finished last season -- on the outside of the polls.
Minnesota has a chance to run out to a similar start this year and work their way back in, but they will be tested early in the Big Ten schedule when they play the No. 18 Michigan Wolverines on January 1. The Golden Gophers don't play another preseason Top 25 team again until February 9 vs. No. 14 Wisconsin, but have to follow that up five days later with a showdown against No. 3 Ohio State.
Minnesota plays No. 14 Wisconsin again in the penultimate game of the season and also plays Michigan State, who received Top 25 votes, twice throughout the season as well.
Minnesota kicks off their schedule on November 11 vs. Bucknell Bison.
Click here for a look at the full preseason Top 25 Coaches Poll.