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Freshman Jonathan Taylor, who operates behind a massive, mobile line, is the engine behind an offense that has fifth-ranked Wisconsin off to an 11-0 start.
Changes made to the depth chart reflect his frustration with drops.
Odds are good there will be enough teams finishing with six victories that Minnesota won't be able to sneak into a bowl game the way it did two years ago.
Sophomore Tyler Johnson missed Minnesota's 39-0 loss at Northwestern on Saturday, reportedly because of a broken left wrist suffered last week against Nebraska.
Another (!!!) bad weather game for the Gophers football team? Coach P.J. Fleck's first Minnesota season has seen enough of those already.
Come next month, the recruiting world will go through a seismic shift as December 20 becomes the circle-the-calendar date for college football programs.
Steven Richardson, a soft-spoken 6-0, 292-pound defensive tackle, expects a good turnout of family, friends and "even past teachers all the way from elementary school" for the Gophers-Northwestern game.
Winfield, who originally hurt the hamstring Aug. 8 in training camp, hasn't played since the first quarter of the fourth game of the season.
The two met for lunch in Evanston, Ill., in 2007, when Fleck was a first-year wide receivers coach at Northern Illinois and wanted to pick Fitzgerald's brain for coaching tips and knowledge.
When a quarterback rushes for nearly 200 yards and a running back piles up almost 300 all-purpose yards, people take notice.And that's exactly what happened…
Rodney Smith piled up a career-best 279 all-purpose yards vs. Nebraska while quarterback Demry Croft added 183 on the ground.
The Cornhuskers have ditched high preseason hopes and are just trying to get to six wins to make a bowl game. That won't be easy.
Coach P.J. Fleck sees Cashman as an example of what he wants in every player, which is why he's been earning more playing time with the Gophers.
Left tackle Donnell Greene is facing discipline from coach P.J. Fleck for an on-field incident last week, and center Jared Weyler left the Michigan game after aggravating a foot injury.
After Michigan ran all over P.J. Fleck's Gophers in a 33-10 victory — the Wolverines rushed for 366 yards on the strength of touchdown gallops of 77, 67 and 60 yards — the coach used the term repeatedly to describe the result.
Antonio Shenault and Kiondre Thomas returned after missing the Gophers' previous game.
The U had to endure one storm from Mother Nature before getting hit by another from the Wolverines offense.
A look at the Barber family and their influence on Gophers football:
The Gophers face a Michigan team playing a quarterback making his first college start.
When the Gophers travel to Ann Arbor for Saturday's battle for the Little Brown Jug vs. Michigan, coach P.J. Fleck will experience a first. "I've never been to the Big House," Fleck said.
Brennan Armstrong, a three-star quarterback from Ohio, who gave the Gophers a verbal commitment in February for 2018, said Monday night that he has reopened his recruiting.
Iowa scored on its opening drive and did enough to hang on to a 17-10 victory over the Gophers, who came tantalizingly close to claiming hold to Floyd of Rosedale.
The Gophers were without their two starting cornerbacks Saturday night against the Hawkeyes.
The Hawkeyes have won seven in row vs. the Gophers at home. P.J. Fleck knows all about the pressure to break that streak. "I can't tell you how many tweets I had, 'Beat Iowa. Beat Wisconsin,'" he said.
Senior has become a most valuable player in Minnesota's secondary.
About the opponent After a strong start (stirring OT comeback to beat Iowa State, narrow loss to Penn State), Iowa fell to Michigan State and…
Kobe McCrary's play during two fill-in roles has Gophers coach P.J. Fleck changing a two-running back rotation into a three-back timeshare beginning with Saturday's game at Iowa.
With the 111th meeting between the Gophers and rival Iowa on tap Saturday at Kinnick Stadium, the lead-up to the battle for the Floyd of Rosedale trophy has been tame.
After making a decision following the first few games not to juggle his quarterbacks, coach P.J. Fleck will now turn attention to moving his top three running backs in and out of the game.
P.J. Fleck hasn't made knee-jerk decisions about his quarterbacks, and he indicated on Sunday that the starting job belongs to Croft.
The ground game led by Kobe McCrary and Rodney Smith carried P.J. Fleck to his first Big Ten win.
The senior linebacker made the game's key play, intercepting a pass by Illinois quarterback Cam Thomas and returning it 31 yards for a touchdown and 24-10 Gophers lead with 4:11 left in the fourth quarter.
What worked before is likely to work again when the Gophers take on Illinois.
C.J. Smith III, a senior, is a 6-1, 175-pounder who rescinded his verbal commitment to Georgia Southern.
In their three Big Ten games the Gophers have allowed an average of 213 rushing yards, which ranks 13th of 14 conference teams.
Win or lose, the Gophers at the halfway point have drawn lessons from each game under P.J. Fleck.
Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck remained noncommittal Tuesday about his quarterback for Saturday's homecoming game, and the depth chart lists Conor Rhoda "or" Demry Croft as the starter.
Safety Antoine Winfield Jr. has missed two games because of a left hamstring injury he aggravated Sept. 30 vs. Maryland.
Despite Demry Croft's strong performance after replacing Conor Rhoda, coach P.J. Fleck said he was keeping his decision 'in-house' about who'll start against Illinois.
Demry Croft replaced Conor Rhoda at quarterback and nearly led the Gophers back thanks to three late TDs but ultimately came up three points shy.
Saturday's 7 p.m. kickoff against No. 21 Michigan State was delayed 34 minutes because of nearby lightning strikes.
That long view is hard for some Gophers fans to see this week after two frustrating losses. Compounding the situation are injuries and suspensions that have hit P.J. Fleck's team.
In two Big Ten games, opponents have put up 32 fourth-quarter points on the Gophers. "We've got to learn from it, we've got to grow from it," defensive coordinator Robb Smith said.
The Gophers released their depth chart for Saturday night's game against Michigan State, and among the changes listed was an interesting one at quarterback.
Injuries have forced the Gophers to exhaust their depth and play more than a dozen freshmen throughout the lineup.
The Gophers need improvement in the passing game, players getting healthy, youngsters maturing quickly and even some good fortune to reverse their winless Big Ten start.
The Gophers collected four first-half turnovers Saturday from Purdue, but left the door open after halftime and lost late after allowing a touchdown and throwing a pick-six interception.
The Gophers took a trio of hits Saturday when wide receiver Phillip Howard, offensive tackle Nick Connelly and cornerback Kiondre Thomas suffered injuries and did not return.
Brady Brohm, 12, who aspires to be a football coach, may be conflicted Saturday.
Purdue has become more competitive under first-year coach Jeff Brohm.
Phillip Howard, a redshirt freshman and former standout from Robbinsdale Cooper, is slated to start for the second consecutive week when the Gophers face Purdue on Saturday in West Lafayette
In the 31-24 loss to Maryland, the Gophers struggled to run the ball, mustering only 80 yards on 31 carries. Croft's skills have the potential to help.
Duke McGhee has been suspended because of a violation of team rules and Antoine Winfield Jr. is questionable because of a hamstring injury.
Gophers coach P.J. Fleck said Sunday morning on WCCO Radio that wide receiver Demetrius Douglas will miss the rest of the season because of an…
Injuries and a suspension are starting to take a toll on the Gophers, and that was apparent Saturday at TCF Bank Stadium.
You can add another category into the list of firsts P.J. Fleck's inaugural season as Gophers football coach. His first loss. The Gophers fell 31-24 to Maryland on Saturday afternoon.
Maryland (2-1) turned heads with its 51-41 victory at Texas to open the season, but coach DJ Durkin's Terrapins have endured mainly bad luck since.
Last season against Maryland, he was a little-known sub. Saturday, he begins his final Big Ten season against the same team as the undisputed leader.
Both players were hurt during the victory over Middle Tennessee State. Zo Craighton was a reserve cornerback; Melvin Holland played mostly on special teams.
Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck acknowledges there are some long-term injuries to players but isn't naming names, extending the trend of secrecy in college football.
P.J. Fleck's practice of keeping the team in the locker room differs from Minnesota tradition, although changes to the Gophers' routine took place last season.
Rodney Smith and Shannon Brooks are on track to play against the Terrapins after suffering injuries during the Gophers' nonconference schedule.
The Gophers rolled to a 34-3 victory at TCF Bank Stadium but running backs Shannon Brooks and Rodney Smith played a combined one half of football.
Brent Stockstill is in his third year as a starter for the Blue Raiders and has passed for 7,714 yards and 65 touchdowns in his career. His absence was a big blow Saturday for the visitors to TCF Bank Stadium.
Rickie James, the Blue Raiders' best player, can score from anywhere on the field. Antoine Winfield Jr., the Gophers' best defensive back will spend the day trying to prevent that.
Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck isn't endorsing religion; he hopes his players 'believe in something bigger.'
Breaking down Saturday's game at TCF Bank Stadium.
Demry Croft is the second player coach P.J. Fleck has sat in his first year in Minnesota. "If you can't abide by the culture, you're not going to play," Fleck said.
Coming soon to Gophers football: An Ohio State season opener at TCF Bank Stadium, early October rivalry games against Wisconsin and nonconference games mixed into the Big Ten schedule
Conor Rhoda will have three starts and a bye week under his belt before the Big Ten season begins with a visit from Maryland on Sept. 30.
The Gophers forced three turnovers and got long-yardage plays on the ground and through the air against the Beavers en route to a 48-14 romp at Oregon State.
A breakdown of Saturday night's game in Corvallis, Ore.
Though the Gophers began the P.J. Fleck era by winning, their offensive performance, especially, raised questions.
Those who anticipated an easy win and a high-energy celebration of a new regime likely went home only partially satisfied following the 17-7 victory in a game where the Gophers were favored to win by almost four touchdowns.
Tyler Johnson had all of his six catches for 141 yards in the first half, including a 61-yard touchdown in the first quarter.
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