Ex-Gophers' coach Horton to San Diego State

  • Updated: January 26, 2011 - 4:21 AM
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Jeff Horton

Photo: Marlin Levison, Star Tribune

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For a few days last month, it appeared possible that Minnesota could wind up hiring San Diego State's head coach. Turns out, it was the other way around. Jeff Horton, the Gophers' coach for the final five games of the 2010 season, was formally hired by San Diego State on Tuesday and put in charge of the Aztecs' running backs. He'll also serve as assistant head coach to Rocky Long, who was put in charge of the Aztecs earlier this month when Michigan hired Brady Hoke -- an early target of Minnesota's own coaching search.

It's a reunion of former WAC head coaches, though Horton, a former UNLV coach, and Long, who spent a decade leading New Mexico, never faced each other in a WAC game. "But I admired Rocky from afar for a long time. It's going to be fun working for him," Horton said. "This program has really turned around, and I'm thrilled to be in at the start."

PHIL MILLER

Gophers tennis, wrestling get a boost

• Gophers freshman Natallia Pintusava was named the Big Ten women's tennis player of the week.

• The Gophers wrestling team moved up one spot to No. 4 in National Wrestling Coaches Association/USA Today national poll. ... The Gophers women's hockey team stayed No. 5 this week in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine's national poll.

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