The University of Minnesota and the Vikings will announce Thursday that they have agreed to terms on a facility use agreement that allows the Vikings to use TCF Bank Stadium for the 2014 and 2015 seasons while their new stadium is being built on the old Metrodome site.
The agreement is subject to a vote by the University of Minnesota Board of Regents on Thursday.
Within the agreement are stipulations that the Vikings will reimburse the university for any required TCF Bank Stadium capital improvements, as well as all gameday operational expenses for Vikings home games.
In addition, the Vikings will pay the university a per-game rent of $250,000 for the 2014 and 2015 season. The team will also share $50,000 per game in concessions, advertising and sponsorship revenue. In total, the Vikings will pay the university $300,000 per game and a maximum of $3 million per season.
However the $3 million doesn’t include any extra costs the Viking might incur to winterize the stadium, such as installing a heated field at a cost of approximately $2 million, and adding temporary seating in the open end of the stadium.
There also could be additional costs to the Vikings to make concession stands more easily available to fans.
Mauer’s ups, downs
Through his first 14 games this season, Twins catcher Joe Mauer was hitting .393 with a .439 on-base percentage after going 24-for-61 at the plate with five walks. Mauer had two home runs, five doubles, 10 runs scored and seven RBI, and was one of the hottest hitters in the league.
But over the next 11 games, Mauer went only 5-for-42, a .119 average, with six walks. He didn’t have a single extra-base hit in that stretch while scoring two runs and driving in one run.
But now Mauer appears to have picked things back up, going 8-for-16 in the past four games to post a .500 batting average with six doubles, two RBI and three runs scored. Mauer was 3-for-5 with two doubles and three runs scored in the Twins’ 15-8 victory at Boston on Wednesday night.
Wild the underdog
Brian Lawton, the former North Stars player and Tampa Bay general manager, said he believes the Wild will have to get more out of its top line if it is to avoid elimination from the playoffs in Game 5 on Thursday night in Chicago.
“They’ll have to get their top scorers scoring,” Lawton said. “That has been the biggest difference. They’re obviously struggling to score goals on the five-on-five and on the power play.
“I think it’ll be a surprise if they win the series. They could win [Thursday] night, but are they going to win the series? So far I think they’ve been outscored [12-6] in the four games, I’m not sure, but by a lot. Most of these series there’s a goal or two difference, that’s how you know if it really truly is close. When you get outscored that much, it’s really not that close.”
Maturi almost done
For the past year, former Gophers athletic director Joel Maturi remained a member of the university, assisting with course development and teaching classes in the College of Education and Human Development Department of Kinesiology and helping the university with fundraising.
He also worked on special projects assigned by university President Eric Kaler.
However, all his duties except for teaching will come to close with the ending of the current semester on May 17.
Glasscock stays at U
Billy Glasscock, the director of recruiting operations at the University of Minnesota, has turned down a similar position at North Carolina State and will stay with Jerry Kill and the Gophers football program despite the fact that he was offered a raise in salary.
Glasscock, in his second season here with Kill, overseas all official visits of recruits and handles all aspects of Gophers football recruiting.
Before coming to Minnesota, Glasscock — the father of recently born twin daughters — worked at Northern Illinois under Kill for two years as an recruiting operation assistant and assistant strength and conditioning coach.
Vikings trade for now
Mel Kiper Jr. of ESPN.com gave the Patriots an overall grade of C-plus for their draft, writing, “I don’t see a starter out of this draft in the short-term, but they added players with some really good traits. It’s just a matter of development now.”
He gave the Vikings a grade of B and wrote, “They got starters, but they needed to add impact in this draft considering they dealt [Percy] Harvin and had a few pretty big needs.”
The Patriots received four draft picks to give the Vikings the 29th overall pick, with which they selected Tennessee wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson. The Patriots used the Vikings’ second-round pick [No. 52 overall] to select Jamie Collins, an outside linebacker/defensive end from Southern Miss.
They selected Rutgers cornerback Logan Ryan with the Vikings’ third-round pick [No. 83 overall]. In the fourth round they took TCU receiver Josh Bryce with the 102nd overall pick. They packaged their last pick from the Vikings, the 229th overall, with running back Jeff Demps to trade for Tampa Bay running back LaGarrette Blount.
• Kill was the best man at the wedding of Gary Patterson, head coach of the TCU football team that will play the Gophers in 2014 and 2015. Patterson was offered the Gophers job and turned it down before Kill took the position; Patterson later changed his mind and decided to accept it, but it was not available.
Kill and Patterson never have been on the same staff, but Patterson was linebackers coach at Pittsburg (Kan.) State in 1988 after Kill had been defensive coordinator there from 1985-87.
• Neither Kill nor any of the Gophers coaches will talk about it, but the word is that wide receiver A.J. Barker, who quit the football squad last year after having differences with the program, wanted to come back to the team, but that apparently isn’t going to happen.
• Talk about the Timberwolves having a lot of injuries: The Gophers had 17 players undergo surgery by Dr. Pat Smith from the 2012 season through 2013 spring football practice.
• Eric Musselman, who was a candidate for the Gophers basketball coaching job, has been associate head coach at Arizona State, where Herb Sendek is head coach, since August of 2012.