GOPHERS 44, NEW MEXICO STATE 21
The recap: Leading 3-0 after one quarter, the Gophers got rushing touchdowns from David Cobb and Rodrick Williams and a punt return touchdown from Marcus Jones to make it 27-7 by halftime.
What was learned: With starting tailback Donnell Kirkwood out because of a sprained ankle, the Gophers still rushed for 342 yards, including career highs for Williams (148) and Philip Nelson (122).
YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:
• Defensive end Alex Keith suffered what might be a broken hand after making four tackles, coach Jerry Kill said.
• Senior kicker Chris Hawthorne hit all three of his field-goal tries (from 45, 22 and 27 yards) and all five of his extra points.
• Backup quarterback Mitch Leidner saw action, albeit limited, for the second consecutive week, rushing two times for 11 yards.
• Marcus Jones raced 65 yards for the Gophers’ first punt return touchdown since Tellis Redmon’s against Northwestern in 2000.
UP NEXT: Western Illinois
11 a.m. Saturday, TCF Bank Stadium
TV: Big Ten Network • Radio: 100.3-FM
Records: Gophers 2-0, Western Illinois 2-0
The skinny: Western Illinois plays in FCS (Football Championship Subdivision), which produced eight victories over FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) teams in Week 1. The Leathernecks went 3-8 last season, averaging fewer than 10 points per game, but they opened this season with victories over Hampton (42-9) and Quincy (34-6). They are coached by Bob Nielson, who went 100-26 and won two NCAA Division II championships in 10 years as the head coach at Minnesota Duluth.