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Plsek, Wipson, two others no longer on Gophers football roster

Gophers tight end Lincoln Plsek was a medical redshirt candidate after missing his senior season with a back injury last fall, but his time with the team has come to an end.

Plsek, a projected starter heading into last season, is graduating and no longer on the roster, the team confirmed Friday.

Plsek, a native of West, Texas, played 34 career games for the Gophers, mostly as a blocking tight end. He made eight career receptions for 71 yards.

He was expected to play a key role last season, when the Gophers had to replace Maxx Williams and Drew Goodger, but the back injury kept Plsek sidelined. Brandon Lingen emerged as a go-to passing target at tight end last year, and fellow sophomore Nate Wozniak got steady playing time in the blocking tight end role.

Another scholarship player who has left the program is linebacker Chris Wipson, who is focusing on academics, the team said. Wipson, a Wayzata native, was the Gophers' lone scholarship signee from Minnesota in 2013. He tore the ACL in his left knee as a high school senior and redshirted for the Gophers in 2013 before playing in four games the following year. Wipson did not play in any games last fall.

Two walk-on players who are no longer on the roster are fullback Tyler Hartmann and defensive back Cavonte Johnson. Hartmann is leaving the program due to graduation and Johnson is focusing on academics, according to the Gophers.

Hartmann was a backup fullback to departing senior Miles Thomas last year as a redshirt junior. The Gophers will need to find others who can fill that fullback hole this year.

 

Spring ball starts March 1 for Gophers; fewer practices open to public

Spring football is right around the corner for the Gophers, starting March 1, but the team won't be quite as accessible to the public as it's been in the past.

Former coach Jerry Kill kept all 15 spring practice sessions open to the public his first four years at Minnesota. Last year, when the team began experimenting with a no-huddle offense, Kill closed the first two spring practices before keeping the rest open.

This year, new coach Tracy Claeys is keeping eight of the 15 spring practice sessions closed to the public, including the first four. This will give new offensive coordinator a chance Jay Johnson to begin installing his systems before the public (and media) gets access to watch March 10.

It's worth noting that many programs around the country close all their spring practices to the public until their spring games. The Gophers still have seven open sessions, including the April 9 spring game at TCF Bank Stadium.

Just like the past two years, the Gophers scheduled a chunk of their practices before spring break with another chunk afterward. The university has spring break March 14-18. Here's the Gophers spring practice schedule (subject to change):

March 1 -- Practice 1 (Closed to the public and media)
March 3 -- Practice 2 (Closed to the public and media)
March 5 -- Practice 3 (Closed to the public and media)
March 8 -- Practice 4 (Closed to the public and media)
March 10 -- Practice 5, Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex (Open to the public and media) 
March 22 -- Practice 6 (Closed to the public and media)
March 24 -- Practice 7, Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex (Open to the public and media)
March 26 -- Practice 8, Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex (Open to the public and media) 
March 29 -- Practice 9 (Closed to the public and media)
March 31 -- Practice 10, Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex (Open to the public and media)
April 2 -- Practice 11, Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex (Open to the public and media) 
April 5 -- Practice 12 (Closed to the public and media)
April 7 -- Practice 13, Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex (Open to the public and media) 
April 8 -- Practice 14 (Closed to the public and media) 
April 9 -- Spring Game, TCF Bank Stadium

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Local Schedule

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  • New Orleans at Timberwolves

    7 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Dallas at Wild

    7 pm on NBCSN, 100.3-FM

  • Toronto at Timberwolves

    7 pm on FSN, 830-AM

  • Michigan at Gophers men's basketball

    8 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • Washington at Wild

    7 pm on FSN, 100.3-FM

  • Nebraska at Gophers women's basketball

    7 pm on 1500-AM

  • Gophers men's hockey at Ohio State

    5:30 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • Gophers women's hockey at Minnesota Duluth

    7:07 pm

  • Boston at Wild

    1 pm on FSN, 100.3-FM

  • Gophers women's hockey at Minnesota Duluth

    4:07 pm

  • Gophers men's hockey at Ohio State

    6 pm on 1500-AM

  • Gophers men's basketball at Iowa

    6:30 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

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