Job in jeopardy, Gophers' Pitino 'not waving the white flag'

KSTP Sports
Created: March 02, 2021 04:07 PM

After starting the season 9-1, the Gophers men's basketball team has fallen on hard times. Currently, the team is 13-12 and the Gophers have lost their last five straight games. 

With the recent struggles has come chatter that head coach Richard Pitino will be fired. 

"We were right in the thick of it, then Liam (Robbins) gets hurt against Purdue, Gabe (Kalscheur) gets hurt right before Maryland, Both (Gach) is really struggling to get healthy, so that has a lot to do with it. That's the challenge of this year. We had so many good wins, five ranked wins, and then all of a sudden right in the middle of it these injuries happened. So there's a lot of things that are out of their control and that's hard," said Pitino about all the recent losses.

***To watch the whole Zoom session with Richard Pitino, CLICK THE PLAY ICON ABOVE***

There is a lot of speculation about the way the team is playing currently and if Pitino will keep his job following the season. Pitino is not pointing the blame on anyone during his team's recent lack of success.

"Just do away with the quest for fairness, nobody wants to hear that. That's been a consistent message for me for many years because we've had a lot of injuries. This team reminds me of our team four years ago. Whatever games you play no matter what the injuries are, when you get into this profession, people are going to want you to win them no matter if the starters are out, pandemic or not, it doesn't matter. I never focus on fair or not fair, that's never been part of my mindset and never will be in anything that I do," Pitino added.

Minnesota Athletic Director Mark Coyle is expected to address Pitino's future following the conclusion of the Gophers basketball season.

Pitino has a $1.75 million buyout until April 30.

The Gophers play at Penn State at Wednesday. Robbins (ankle) will be a game-time decision.

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