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Jim Souhan

Columnist | Sports
Phone: 612-673-4503

Jim Souhan is a sports columnist for the Star Tribune. He has worked at the paper since 1990, previously covering the Twins and Vikings.

Souhan was Sports Editor of his high school paper at Vianney in St. Louis. He wrote and edited for the Missourian at the University of Missouri, where he earned a journalism degree with an emphasis on American literature.
Recent content from Jim Souhan
Rickie Fowler watches where his chip lands on the green at the 18th hole during the 3M Open Thursday, July 21, 2022 at the Tournament Players Club in

Souhan: Drama on the diabolical 18th could well decide 3M Open

Making golf difficult for the best in the world is not about adding length, but creating strategic hazards and extraneous thoughts. The TPC's 18th hole fits that description.
Souhan: Before becoming Boston's 'Big Papi,' David Ortiz felt joy, pain with Twins

Souhan: Before becoming Boston's 'Big Papi,' David Ortiz felt joy, pain with Twins

Columnist Jim Souhan was sitting in the dugout in the Dominican Republic on the day David Ortiz was let go by the Twins. What happened that day — and over the next 20 years — couldn't have been foreseen.
Dustin Johnson at the British Open

Souhan: 3M Open should be proud of playing without golf's traitors

The PGA Tour is back in Minnesota this week for the 3M Open in Blaine, and it will be just fine without all of the LIV Tour defectors.
Aurora players Rachel Preston (29) and Mariah Nguyen celebrated after their 1-0 victory over McLean on Sunday at TCO Stadium in Eagan.

Souhan: Aurora head to final in first year of existence

Minnesota's upstart soccer team is also one of state's best stories.
Just because there’s parallels doesn’t mean the Wolves trade for Rudy Gobert (left) is the same as the Vikings trade for Herschel Walker (right).

Souhan: Is Rudy Gobert the next Herschel Walker? No, and here's why

The first thought from a Minnesota sports fan about that dramatic Timberwolves trade earlier this month might have been: Oh no, not this again. Analyzing deeper, however, reveals big differences in two mega-trades.
Tiger Woods was back at it Thursday, working his way through the first round of the British Open.

Souhan: Edina golf pro has seen Tiger's painful comeback, firsthand

Braemar pro Roger Fahrenkrug watched Tiger Woods in one of the many painful moments one of golf's greats has had in his return.
Luis Arraez has a career batting average of .322 through 3 1⁄2 seasons.

Souhan: Gwynn. Carew. Arraez? Twins star building quite a resume

Luis Arraez was named to his first All-Star team on Sunday and he's proving he's worthy of lofty comparisons.
Soccer icon Briana Scurry met young players Wednesday in Plymouth, including fellow goalie Grace Benson.

Souhan: Women's soccer great Scurry has been to hell and back

Minnesota native Briana Scurry contemplated suicide after a concussion ended her playing career.
Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren, the former Vikings executive, is overseeing the dramatic expansion of the Big Ten.

Souhan: What happens now that USC, UCLA have blown up Big Ten?

The Big Ten is changing from a regional league to a coast-to-coast powerhouse. Here are the next steps that need to be taken in the dramatic reshaping of college sports.
Walker Kessler couldn’t talk about heading to the Timberwolves even though he was heading to the Timberwolves.

Souhan: The NBA draft is dumb

Thursday night, columnist Jim Souhan says he should have crossed the street and covered actual basketball instead of basketball's worst soap opera.
Auburn center Walker Kessler was the Timberwolves’ first pick of the 2022 NBA draft at 22nd overall, after Tim Connelly made a trade with the Memphi

Souhan: Boring? Sure. But Connelly maximized value in rational first draft

Two trades led to two first-round picks in the NBA draft, and Tim Connelly's first draft with the Wolves was characterized by logic, not fireworks.
Minnesota Twins' Byron Buxton beats the tag by New York Yankees catcher Jose Trevino to score from third base on a sacrifice fly by Max Kepler during

Souhan: That plan for resting Buxton the Twins hatched? It's working

Why limit the number of games your best player could play? Why would you avoid using him off the bench in a close game? Baseball can be counterintuitive.
The question of D’Angelo Russell’s future is one of the first major hurdles for the Timberwolves’ new President of Basketball Operations Tim Con

Souhan: Wolves in position to be patient at this NBA draft

The NBA draft and an D'Angelo Russell decision are the first tests for Tim Connelly, the new Wolves president of basketball operations.
Napheesa Collier is missing this season, and so is the Lynx’s usual success. There’s a tie to team history there.

Souhan: Just as they waned upon Moore's exit, Lynx sink in Collier's absence

Reality has weighed in for the Lynx again, issuing a reminder that talented players are necessary for success.
Minnesota Twins manager Rocco Baldelli, left, watches the team's baseball game against the Detroit Tigers during the eighth inning Tuesday, May 24, 20

Souhan: You can question Baldelli's methods, but not his record

Fans may wish that Twins manager Rocco Baldelli would do some things differently. They may be right, but that's missing the long view.
Washington Commanders defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio sparked outrage with his recent comments comparing the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol with

Souhan: Del Rio, once a fine Vikings linebacker, should watch career bite the dust

How does the NFL, which claims to be sensitive to the plight of Black Americans, continue to employ Jack Del Rio? How can anyone take him seriously again?
Byron Buxton had some clutch hitting Wednesday, including a line-drive home run to dead center.

Souhan: Using patient approach, Twins' bats handling AL East arms

Is this a different kind of Twins team? Their at-bats against Toronto and New York the past five games give hope.
Luis Arraez leads the major leagues with a .358 batting average.

Souhan: Even if it hurts, Yankees vs. Arraez, Twins best June match-up in town

Luis Arraez leads the major leagues in batting average and has become the soul of a first-place team, so sit back Twins fans and enjoy facing the best team in baseball — even if it may hurt a bit.
Wolves owners Alex Rodriguez, left, and Marc Lore smiled as they introduced new President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly last week.

Souhan: 'Lo-Rod' building the Wolves in the right way

What Marc Lore and Alex Rodriguez are demonstrating is an understanding of how wealth can be used as an advantage in the portion of the organization not restricted by a salary cap.
UConn’s Paige Bueckers dribbled upcourt during a semifinal game of the NCAA Women’s Final Four in April at Target Center.

Souhan: Should the Lynx tank for Paige? No, and here's why

Among the reasons: A rotten record wouldn't ensure they could draft Paige Bueckers; opportunity remains to salvage the season; Sylvia Fowles deserves a fitting send-off.
Dustin Johnson is among the PGA Tour golfers who have committed to LIV Golf.

Souhan: Spirit of golf is alive on PGA Tour, and dead in Saudi Arabia

The new LIV Golf Invitational Series, which has drawn some big names, is an example of 'sportswashing' by the Saudi Arabian government.
Tim Connelly, the new president of basketball operations for the Timberwolves, is a sign incoming owners Mark Lore and Alex Rodriguez are willing to m

Souhan: What Wolves fans have learned over the past three weeks

With a bit of distance from playoff elimination, Timberwolves fans can draw some conclusions about the state of the franchise.
Twins manager Rocco Baldelli will be without about five unvaccinated players in the upcoming series in Toronto because of Canadian border restrictions

Souhan: Twins' anti-vaxxers putting team in bind

Their stance is illogical and damaging to the team's likability — and playoff chances. These players are betraying their organization.
Vikings offensive coordinator Wes Phillips takes questions

Souhan: Vikings' Phillips remains in the family business

Wes Phillips, the grandson of Bum and son of Wade, is optimistic about the Vikings offense in the hands of Kirk Cousins.
Aurora fans, including Nadia Hinman, left, and her sister Sam, cheered for their team before the inaugural match Thursday at TCO Stadium.

Souhan: Fledgling, sure, but Aurora's first match had big-event vibe

On a beautiful Minnesota night, the Aurora played in what felt like a championship setting. The game was a draw, 1-1, before 5,219 fans, but the game was a success before it began.
Carlos Correa threw to first base in the seventh inning, his play at shortstop has been key to the Twins defensive play this season.

Souhan: Twins climb the standings behind beautiful defensive play

Byron Buxton, Carlos Correa, Gio Urshela are leading the way as the Twins find their superpower is turning line drives into outs
From left, Minnesota Twins second baseman Jorge Polanco (11), designated hitter Byron Buxton (25) and shortstop Royce Lewis (23) celebrate their team�

Souhan: You may disagree, but Twins making right calls on Buxton, Lewis

As hungry as fans are to see Byron Buxton and Royce Lewis run and hit, protecting them for the long run is the wise plan with an AL Central title — and their futures — in play.
Former Vikings running back Herschel Walker at a campaign rally for his U.S. Senate race in Macon, Ga., on Wednesday.

Souhan: Herschel Walker goes from football stardom to troubling Senate candidate

Former Vikings running back Herschel Walker is a leading Republican candidate — with a concerning background — in a U.S. Senate race in his native Georgia.
Gophers gymnast Ona Loper reacted after competing in the vault in January at Maturi Pavilion. Loper ended her standout college career with plenty of a

Souhan: Perfect 10s, All-American, academic honors: U gymnast Loper did college well

Ona Loper just completed a dream career, athletically and academically. It is the kind of success story too easily overlooked in college sports. "The experience of a lifetime," she says.
Raise your hand if you’ve won multiple important postseason games recently. P.J. Fleck can.

Souhan: A Minnesota team that wins postseason games? That's P.J. Fleck's Gophers

Postseason victories are hard to come by around here, so let's appreciate the ones who keep delivering them: the Gophers football players and coaches.
A day after spending Saturday on the bench in a close loss to Cleveland, Byron Buxton was back in center field for the Twins and hit a homer to help t

Souhan: For Twins, playing Buxton is all about risk vs. reward

Their baseball calculus: A healthy Byron Buxton at near full strength for just 100 games might be one of the best and most productive players in the game. They also know that may not be a popular call,
Physicality and size played a large role in the Wild’s first-round playoff exit against the Blues.

Souhan: Reality hits hard — this Wild team wasn't that special

An excellent regular season wasn't enough to elevate the Wild into playoffs success.
Astros pitcher Justin Verlander had reason to smile after allowing only one hit in eight innings in a 5-0 victory over the Twins at Target Field on Tu

Souhan: Healthy again, Verlander shows Twins what aces are all about

Justin Verlander, 39, outdueled rookie Joe Ryan, taking a no-hitter into the eighth inning, in a game for those who prefer pitching mastery over long, loud homers.
Young Twins players such as Jose Miranda, right, and Nick Gordon don’t appear to be overwhelmed by opportunity.

Souhan: Why the Twins are winning despite injuries and oddities

The Twins are in first place in the American League Central more than a month into the season. Imagine what they could do if anything was going right for them.
Jessica Shepard (10) was one of the only Lynx players to shoot effectively in the first half Sunday against Washington.

Souhan: Lynx need effectiveness at point guard, not promise

Former Gophers star Rachel Banham is hoping to follow fellow Gopher Lindsay Whalen in positional success with the Lynx.
Sylvia Fowles (34) and a hastily assembled Lynx roster lost to Ezi Magbegor and the Seattle Storm on Friday.

Souhan: Lynx are facing tough start, predictable finish

Lots of roster moves spell short-term trouble for the old and injured Lynx to kick off the WNBA season. But the Lynx tend to figure things out.
St. Louis Blues' Ryan O'Reilly (90) works against Minnesota Wild's Kevin Fiala (22) for the puck in front of Wild goalie Marc-Andre Fleury during the

Souhan: Wild should put goonery aside in favor of skill — and humor

Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, owner of three Stanley Cup titles, responded to the Game 1 loss to St. Louis with humor more than intensity. He may be on to something.
Lewis Cine was Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s first Vikings draft pick.

Souhan: Adofo-Mensah's first draft with Vikings? Let's call it 'brave'

Having a fast, firm opinion on any NFL team's draft results is foolish, but we do know this: new Vikings GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah did not take the safe or easy routes this past weekend.
D’Angelo Russell had seven points, four assists and four turnovers in the Timberwolves’ Game 6 loss to Memphis.

Souhan: After the Wolves' ups and downs, Russell should go, McLaughlin should stay

The Timberwolves had many highs and lows, and D'Angelo Russell often contributed, but Jordan McLaughlin was better when it mattered. And what about bringing back Tyus Jones?
Donald Verhota reacted to the announcement that the Vikings traded their No. 12 pick for No. 32 at the team’s draft party Thursday night, April 28,

Souhan: New Vikings leaders, same uninspiring choices on draft night

The decision to trade back in the first round of the NFL draft means Kwesi Adofo-Mensah's front office hasn't moved far from its predecessor.
Will Smith will not be in the Vikings draft room on Thursday night.

Souhan: Here is what NFL teams really need at the top of the draft

Mock draft? Sure, our columnist says, let's give that a try. From Jacksonville to the Vikings, here's what each team should really consider in the top 12.
Twins righthander Chris Archer says of his new team: “We have some really, really good arms. Wes is a good pitching coach. Our whole pitching depart

Souhan: Twins rotation developing into unexpected asset

Scouting, analytics and well-conceived game plans have done more than fill holes on a rebuilt staff.
Wolves guard Jordan McLaughlin, center, went up for a shot in the second half Saturday night at Target Center, when he scored 16 points on 5-for-6 sho

Souhan: Zero to hero, McLaughlin rewards Wolves in career-best game

Jordan McLaughlin scored 16 points in 14 minutes, hitting all four three-pointers that he took, after not playing at all in the Wolves' Game 3 collapse.
Fans at Game 3 watched the Timberwolves collapse in impressive fashion against the Grizzlies.

Souhan: What happens when these Wolves are uncomfortable? They fold

The Wolves returned home-court advantage to Memphis. They also gave the Grizzlies an even bigger advantage by the way they fell apart in Game 3.
Minnesota Timberwolves fans celebrate after a dunk by Minnesota Timberwolves forward Anthony Edwards, foreground, during an NBA basketball game agains

Souhan: Wolves surge latest sign that Minneapolis is a basketball city

The Wolves' playoff appearance this weekend will sell out games at Target Center and continue a trend: Minneapolis is a hoops hotbed.
Minnesota Timberwolves guard D'Angelo Russell (0) and Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Chris Finch () in the second half of an NBA basketball game Fr

Souhan: Honest, personable style has made Finch's Wolves a winner

Few other coaches could achieve what Chris Finch has done for the Timberwolves this season. He's on the way to becoming the best coach in franchise history.
Clayton Kershaw showed little concern after he was removed while pitching a perfect game, but baseball’s analysts weighed in strongly.

Souhan: Baseball's impossible standards again lead to destructive criticism

Clayton Kershaw's chance for a perfect game was clearly not worth the health risk, but top analysts railed anyway.
Minnesota Timberwolves guard Patrick Beverley (22) flexes in front of Los Angeles Clippers guard Reggie Jackson (1) during an NBA basketball game Tues

Souhan: Act like they've been there before? Not these Timberwolves

Winning that game? That way? This franchise? Those who know, know: This NBA playoff spot is special for the Wolves, and it was silly to expect them to tone down their celebrating.
Scottie Scheffler got his first green jacket and first Masters trophy on Sunday after winning the tournament by three shots.

Souhan: Can Masters champion Scheffler be golf's Next Big Thing?

Scottie Scheffler has won four tournaments already this year, but to become the new Next Big Thing, he'll be dueling with a lot of former Next Big Things.
Scottie Scheffler celebrated after winning the 86th Masters golf tournament on Sunday.

Souhan: Through smiles and tears, Scheffler lives his Masters dream

Scottie Scheffler capped off an amazing two months with his grandest feat of all, winning the Masters on Sunday to validate his new status as the best player in golf.
Tiger Woods tipped his cap on the 18th green Sunday at Augusta National.

On a 'tough road', Woods limps to second straight 78 at the Masters

The 46-year-old superstar was all smiles, though, after his first competitive rounds since a horrific car accident 14 months earlier.
Tom Hoge teed off on the 14th hole during a practice round at the Masters on Wednesday.

Fargo golfer Hoge finishes his first Masters on a down note

The Fargo pro had a bogey and double bogey on his final two holes for a 78, and said he was disappointed with his play for the week.
Tom Hoge of Fargo shot a second-round 74 on Friday at the Masters.

Souhan: Following Fargo's Tom Hoge at the Masters

The course is tricky but there are birdies available, as Hoge proved today. Here's a hole-by-hole recap.
Scottie Scheffler (pictured) is still the favorite to win the Masters after the third round, but Cameron Smith is only three strokes behind him.

Souhan: Scheffler holds steady, Smith surges to second in Masters

Scottie Scheffler and Cameron Smith will be the first pairing of top-10-ranked players in the final round since 2015.
Fargo’s Tom Hoge made the cut after two rounds of the Masters, but is well down the leaderboard. He’s determined to enjoy his weekend at Augusta N

Midwest-like weather hasn't put Hoge off the Masters

Having made the cut but nowhere near contention, Fargo's Tom Hoge said he's determined to enjoy his time on the course.
Scottie Scheffler chips to the 14th green during the second round at the Masters golf tournament on Friday, April 8, 2022, in Augusta, Ga.

Fargo's Tom Hoge dunks bunker shot on No. 7 for a surprise birdie

Crowds line up to see Tiger Woods play.
Tom Hoge of Fargo shot a second-round 74 on Friday at the Masters.

Fargo's Hoge finds himself among Minnesotans at Masters

At his first Masters, North Dakotan Tom Hoge has spent time with the Lehmans and even encountered a rules official from Faribault.
Scottie Scheffler watched his drive on the 18th tee during the second round at the Masters on Friday in Augusta, Ga.

Souhan: Scheffler says bye-bye with six birdies on day two of Masters

Scottie Scheffler became the sixth player ever to take a five-shot lead into the weekend.
Tom Hoge of Fargo shot a second-round 74 on Friday at the Masters.

Souhan live at the Masters: High winds, high scores shuffle leaderboard

It was an unpredictable day at Augusta National because of the weather, and few golfers were going low.
Tiger Woods heads up the fairway after hitting his tee shot on the first hole.

Souhan: Woods shoots 71 amid Masters throng, calls for 'lots of ice'

If you wanted to walk with Fargo's Tom Hoge or former Gopher Erik van Rooyen, you could stand within a foot of them. Walking with Tiger? Good luck with that.
Sungjae Im teed off on the 15th hole at Augusta National on Thursday on his way to a 67 and the first-round lead in the Masters.

Im plays off good vibes from dad, grabs Masters lead

The South Korean shot a 67 and said he was inspired by a shot his father hit in Wednesday's Par 3 Contest.
The gallery packs around the first tee watching five-time Masters champion Tiger Woods for a practice round.

Souhan live at the Masters: How close could I get to Tiger Woods?

It was a mob scene at the first hole when Tiger Woods teed off for his first round of the Masters. That and more from the scene, including another place that's really crowded at Augusta National.
The Twins this season might rely on a prospect like Josh Winder, eliminating the need for a big pitching trade.

Souhan: Pitching uncertainty is nothing new for the Twins

An early estimate of the Twins' bullpen for 2022 guarantees nothing.
Erik van Rooyen carried his daughter Valerie during the Par 3 contest at Augusta National Golf Club on Wednesday.

Former Gopher van Rooyen has no problem being in Woods' wake

The South African golfer is playing in his 11th major and second Masters this week.
Phil Mickelson at the 2020 Masters

Souhan live at the Masters: Mickelson's absence and course changes

Masters chairman Fred Ridley held his annual press conference on Wednesday and said Phil Mickelson withdrew from The Masters in a text, and that the tournament did not dissuade him from playing.
Tiger Woods, front, and Justin Thomas played a practice round together Wednesday ahead of the Masters.

Souhan: With no clear successor, Woods still consumes golf spotlight

If golf had produced another king, Tiger Woods might be more of an oddity and less of an obsession this week.
Tom Hoge hits out of a bunker on the second hole during a practice round at Augusta National Golf Club on Monday.

From Fargo to Augusta: Hoge basks in his first Masters

Tom Hoge will be the first North Dakotan to play in the Masters since Mike Podolak in 1983, and he is more than an endearing long shot.
Tiger Woods tees off on the seventh hole Monday during a practice round for the Masters.

Souhan: Can Woods win the Masters? Why not?

There's no reason to believe Tiger Woods, recovering from a severe leg injury, can contend at Augusta. Except for all the other times he's defied expectations.
Spectators leave the Augusta National Golf Course after play was suspended because of approaching inclement during a practice round for the Masters on

Souhan at the Masters: Woods is in; Fargo golfer plays with Spieth

Practice rounds were suspended and patrons asked to leave the course during a thunderstorm that started in late morning and is still going on mid-afternoon.
South Carolina coach Dawn Staley, right, celebrated the team’s 64-49 win over UConn in Sunday’s NCAA championship game.

Souhan: Want to promote women's basketball? Expand the WNBA

The Final Four in Minneapolis showed the sport is thriving. But the next step for developing the game is adding teams to the WNBA.
UConn guard Paige Bueckers passed under pressure from South Carolina forward Victaria Saxton during Sunday’s championship game at Target Center.

Souhan: Bueckers makes effort, but homecoming ends without a title

We were all watching to see if it could happen, Paige Bueckers winning it all in her hometown. It didn't, but only because South Carolina was so good.
UConn’s Geno Auriemma and South Carolina’s Dawn Staley ran practices for their teams at Target Center on Saturday.

Souhan: Staley, Auriemma bring 'Philly Tough' attitude to title game

South Carolina's Dawn Staley and UConn's Geno Auriemma, two Philadelphia natives, bring an intensity and pride to their teams that is hard to miss.
Paige Bueckers and Ashten Prechtel (11) of Stanford fight for the ball in the fourth quarter.

Souhan: Bueckers plays through new injury and thrives again

Friday night on a home Target Center court, Paige Bueckers, one of the best players Minnesota has ever produced, fought through injury and guided UConn to the national title game.
Stanford forward Cameron Brink is one of the many college stars the media should be focusing on this weekend, not gender inequity.

Souhan: Put focus on Final Four's incredible players, coaches, stories

This weekend we should focus on the games, the atmosphere and the drama of a captivating women's Final Four instead of dwelling on all — good and bad — that led up to it.
USA National Team during a practice  in Minneapolis, Minn., on Wednesday, March 30, 2022. 

USA National Team and Minnesota Lynx head coach Cheryl R

Souhan: Women's basketball present, future pass each other at Final Four

Wednesday's practice became a basketball convention within a basketball convention in what Cheryl Reeve and the Minnesota Lynx have made one of the meccas of the sport.