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Minnesota Vs. Indiana: Must-Win Game For Gophers

The Minnesota Golden Gophers have had their NCAA Tournament hopes dwindle over the past couple of weeks, but Sunday afternoon's game against the Indiana Hoosiers can put them right back into contention. It won't be easy, but considering Tubby Smith's beat already beat Indiana on the road, there's reason for optimism.

The Gophers are currently dealing with a four-game losing streak, but the losses haven't been to easy competition considering their last four opponents at Williams Arena have been ranked in the Top 25. They obviously lost all of those games as the only victory against a ranked opponent came against Indiana in January.

Sunday's game could be a big milestone for Gophers senior Ralph Sampson III. Sampson III enters the game just eight points shy of 1,000 career points. If he reaches that goal on Sunday, he'll join pretty elite company as one of just five players with 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 150 blocks considering the others are Kevin McHale, Randy Breuer, Mychal Thompson and Michael Bauer.

The Gophers will likely need another big game from Austin Hollins as he led Minnesota off the bench with 18 points in their last game against the Hoosiers. If they're unable to stop Cody Zeller, though, even that might not be enough.

For more on the Minnesota Golden Gophers, check out The Daily Gopher. You can also learn more about college basketball around the nation at SB Nation's College Basketball hub.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.