Sportress of Blogitude

College Basketball

Joey King gives emotional interview after Minnesota upsets Maryland (vid)


Minnesota Golden Gophers senior forward Joey King was overcome with emotion during a postgame interview after the team pulled off a stunning 68-63 upset the No. 6 Maryland Terrapins on their home court at Williams Arena on Thursday night.

The victory was Minnesota’s first Big Ten win of the season after starting their conference portion of their schedule 0-13. The shocking outcome also snapped a 14-game losing streak overall.

The long-suffering Gophers fan base stormed the court following the cathartic victory.

King, who scored 15 points and corralled six rebounds coming off the bench, obviously was overwhelmed by the moment during an on-court interview with Big Ten Network’s Jon Crispin, specifically expressing gratitude to the program’s loyal fans.

“There’s not too many fans that would come out day in and day out for an 0-13 team,” King said. “To have the kind of support we have here is something really special. I mean, we haven’t had the best year, but we kept fighting and we knew we’d show up one of these nights. To have it against Maryland, one of the top teams in the country, in front of our home crowd, it’s something they deserve. They’ve stuck with us all year. We’ve just continued to fight every night.

“When you see all the freshmen and sophomores we have, I’m just so proud of how they overcame their youth and just continued to fight every single night. They haven’t gotten down in practice. They just kept fighting and that — I know it’s something that’s going to show up next year in terms of our record. Just the intensity that we play with, the heart, it’s just something we should be really proud of despite our record.”

The Gophers obviously are going nowhere in King’s final season but the emotion he showed and the loyalty he demonstrated to the program is exactly why every once in a while, college sports still can reach the heights for which it arguably always should aspire to achieve.