SEASON: 61 | YEAR: 2009
HEAD COACH: DAVE METZEN


Game 727 | January 12 | Tubby Smith
In Coach Smith's second year at Minnesota, his Gopher basketball team got off to a 12-0 start and were 16-1 at one point. Led by Lawrence Westbrook and Damian Johnson, the Gophers finished 22-11 and advanced into NCAA play where they lost to Texas in the first round.

Game 728 | January 23 | Denard Span, Glen Perkins
Before leaving for spring training it appeared the Twins were closed with five starting outfielders. Span emerged as the team's regular center fielder. Perkins sat out much of the season with various injuries.

Game 729 | February 12 | Steve Plasentia, Gary Wilson,
Mike Hebert, Mikki Denny Wright

Over the years many Gopher football, basketball, hockey and baseball coaches have visited Dunkers, but this provided an insight look at how coaches recruit and share scholarships to build winning programs in track, cross country, volleyball and soccer.

Game 730 | February 25 | Brian Burke
A Providence, R.I. native who grew up in suburban Edina, Burke played hockey only briefly after attendance Providence College. He graduated from Harvard Law School. After head hockey management jobs in Hartford, Vancouver and Anaheim, he became president and general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs in late 2008. He also will be general manager of the U.S. National Hockey team which will compete in Vancouver in the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.

Game 731 | March 10 | J Robinson, John Anderson
Robinson, Gopher head wrestling coach for 23 years, kept his team in the top ten in the country every year from 1997-2008. Anderson, entering his 28th season as head Gopher baseball coach, talked about improving prospects for a new, on campus, stadium and his team provided him with his 1,000th victory two months later.

Game 732 | March 31 | Dave Stead, Jon McBroom, Dan Johnson,
Mike MacMillan, John Washington

Administrators and coaches gave Dunkers an inside look at the state of high school sports in Minnesota at the peak of winter tournament season.

Game 733 | April 7 | Bob Kurtz, Ralph Stangis
In an entertaining session Strangis told of wrangling every announcing job he could find before getting a chance to call North Stars hockey. Still a Minnesotan at heart, he has done Stars broadcasts since the team moved to Dallas. Kurtz, the radio play-by-play voice of the Minnesota Wild from day one, traced his career from the Twins to the Red Sox and back to Minnesota.

Game 734 | May 7 | Ron Schara
A veteran of three decades on local and national television and 40 years as an outdoor writer and columnist for the Star Tribune, Schara talked the state of wildlife and the environment today and how much things have changed over his years on the scene.

Game 735 | May 11 | Brock Lesnar
A neighbor of Dunker Wheelock Whitney, Lesnar told of his wrestling career. As a Golden Gopher he was the 2000 NCAA Heavyweight Champion, He became three-time World Wrestling Entertainment Champion and the youngest ever to hold that title. Before speaking at Dunkers, Lesnar switched to mixed martial arts and won the Ultimate Fighting Championship in 2008.

Game 736 | May 28 | Ron Gardenhire, Bill Smith, Joe Vavra
It was a repeat visit for Manager Gardenhire and General Manager Smith, but Vavra fielded a number of questions about the role of Batting Coach and his thoughts on hitting in various situations.

Game 737 | June 17 | David Kahn
In the largest front-office shakeup in Timberwolves history, Kahn emerged after a long search as the President of Basketball Operations. A 15-year NBA veteran, Kahn promised to review every aspect of team operations. As a result, the 2009-10 team retained only five players and no coaches from the year before.

Game 738 | July 8 | Chip Beck
A four-time winner on the PGA tour, Beck recalled for Dunkers the round of 59 he shot in 1991 at Las Vegas. Beck was yet another of the great representatives supplied year-after-year by Hollis Cavner and Tom Duffy whose 2009 3M Championship, offering free admission, was named 2009 Champions Tour Event of the Year.

Game 739 | August 13 | Jim Nantz
In town to cover the PGA Championship at Hazeltine, Nantz talked about his career in broadcasting going back to his college days when he was a golf teammate of Fred Couples. He was befriended by legendary broadcaster Jim McKay, and got his network start while still in his 20s. He amused Dunkers with his tales of a round of golf with former Presidents Bush (41) and Clinton.

Game 740 | August 27 | Bob Bruininks, Joel Maturi
Just two weeks before the opening of TCF Stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota, President Bruininks and Athletic Director Joe Maturi hosted Dunkers at the new facility. The tour of the $288 million facility was the first Dunkers meeting away from the Minneapolis Club in more than a decade.

Game 741 | September 1 | Tim Brewster
Only four days before the Gopher football team’s season opener at Syracuse, Coach Brewster shared his thoughts on his 2009 team and the prospect of having Gopher football back on campus for the first time in 27 years. He commented on how coincidental it was to be opening on the road in the Carrier Dome after spending so many years at the Metrodome.

Game 742 | September 29 | Brad Childress
The Minnesota Vikings coach talked about the discussion that led to Brett Favre’s decision to join the team midway through the pre-season schedule. He referred to Favre as “the missing piece,” and predicted that first-round draft choice Percy Harvin would make a major contribution to the Vikings offense and kick return team.

Game 743 | October 13 | Kurt Rambis, Bill Laimbeer
Rambis, the new head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves, defended the drafting of Ricky Rubio and said the team was positioning itself for the future through a combination of good young players, extra high draft choices and money to sign impact free agents. He talked about all he had learned a an assistant under Lakers Coach Phil Jackson. Limber, one of the most successful coaches in the history of the WNBA, said he was thrilled to join the Timberwolves and looked forward to working the the team's big men.

Game 744 | November 3 | Chuck Fletcher, Todd Richards
The Minnesota Wild's new general manager, Fletcher, and coach, Richards, told Dunkers of their careers leading up to the offers to join the Wild. Fletcher's father, Cliff, is one of he most respected senior executives in the league, and Richards was a very successful minor league coach following his playing career in the National Hockey League and with the Minnesota Gophers.

Game 745 | November 6 | Pam Borton, Tubby Smith
A new court a Williams Arena will be ready for the start of the new Gopher basketball season. Coach Smith talked of problems that were keeping two of his best players off the active roster, and Coach Borton talked of bringing in taller, more athletic freshmen to offset the loss of high scorer Emily Fox.

Game 746 | November 11 | Don Lucia, Brad Frost
Both the men's and women's Gopher hockey coaches talked about their prospects for the 2009-2010 season. Coach Lucia pointed out that Olympic years used to be disruptive to college teams, but the decision to use only professional players has made things easier for college coaches.

Annual Meeting 2009 | December 10 | Sid Hartman, Dave Mona
Sid Hartman and Dave Mona interviewed a series of guests from the local sports scene about the year about to end and the prospects for the coming year.