Kicking 48-yard field goals in practice is one thing. Kicking them on the road, before 100,000 opposing fans, is another.
The Gophers knew redshirt freshman Ryan Santoso had a big leg. Last Saturday at Michigan, they learned he could be cool under pressure.
Santoso was 1-for-3 on his field goal attempts heading into that game. But he went 3-for-3 against the Wolverines, hitting from 24, 48 and 25 yards. The 24-yarder from the right hash as time expired on the first half gave the Gophers a 10-7 lead. The 48-yarder made it 13-7. Those were two critical kicks.
“It helps a lot, just getting that 100 percent in that one game,” Santoso said. “But you’ve just got to move on and go to the next game.”
Santoso has 19 of his 25 kickoffs (76 percent) into touchbacks. With that percentage, the Gophers rank fourth in the nation.
Another Little Brown Jug appearance -- Goal Line Club luncheon
The Gophers put the Little Brown Jug out for public display on Wednesday and Thursday at TCF Bank Stadium. I'm sure there will be other chances to see it, but a friend of mine e-mailed with a reminder about an upcoming Goal Line Club luncheon. These luncheons take place the Friday before each home game. On Oct. 10, the luncheon will be at Jax Café in northeast Minneapolis.
The program will include offensive coordinator Matt Limegrover and two players. Before it opens, at 11:15 a.m., there will be chances to get a picture with the jug. The cost is $25, and $20 for Goal Line Club members and their guests. Register at www.goallineclub.com before next Wednesday.