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Softball: A measuring stick weekend against Minnesota looms

Going by Northwestern academics, at least, this weekend might represent a Week 8 “midterm” for Wildcat softball. The road for No. 14 Northwestern (41-7, 20-0 B1G) certainly will not stop this weekend as they close out their regular season. But regardless of outcome, the series will almost certainly give the Wildcats a good sense of their chances the rest of the way.

This weekend’s opponent is perennial Big Ten and national power No. 11 Minnesota (37-10, 18-1). The Golden Gophers clock in at #10 in this week’s NCAA RPI rankings, one spot ahead of the Wildcats. They are the winner of the last three Big Ten Tournaments and four of the last five, with a regular season title thrown in there for good measure.