U assistant to leave booth, monitor QB from sideline

  • Article by: PHIL MILLER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 14, 2012 - 9:10 PM

When Philip Nelson moved into the starting lineup, it triggered another move, too. With a freshman quarterback experiencing his first collegiate games, Gophers coach Jerry Kill asked quarterbacks coach Jim Zebrowski to watch the games from the sidelines, rather than from the coaches' booth.

"I'd like to have Jimmy in the box, but having a young quarterback, you don't want to get too many people talking to the kid," Kill said. "I may say a couple of things to him, but I don't want him to get different communication" during games. So until Nelson gets more experience as the starter, Zebrowski is there to offer immediate feedback and advice the moment the teenage quarterback comes off the field.

"Jimmy's pretty good at molding young quarterbacks," Kill said.

That's not the only lineup change Kill has made to his game-day staff. Assistant head coach Bill Miller, who spent the first year and a half of his Gophers tenure coaching linebackers on the sidelines, has moved up to the booth, where Miller believes he can be far more effective. Miller, who has served as defensive coordinator for seven other teams, has spent virtually his entire 35-year career in the booth on game days.

"I think he felt I wanted him on the field, so he didn't ask me about it," Kill said. "But [special assistant] Mike Sherels has done such a good job of the communication with the kids on the field, we didn't need both. And [Miller] is good in the booth, so we felt like it was a good move."

Top threat still out

A.J. Barker, the Gophers' leading receiver, has not practiced this week, and Kill sounded resigned to facing Nebraska without him on Saturday. Barker has sat out two games since suffering a sprained ankle while scoring a touchdown against Purdue on Oct. 27. But Kill said Derrick Engel, a junior from Chaska who has caught 10 passes and a touchdown, has returned to practice and could play.

Ed Olson will play at left tackle, Kill said, after missing four games because of a sprained ankle of his own, though he may not start and will likely be limited. Marek Lenkiewicz figures to get the start at Olson's spot. But Tommy Olson is the probable starter at left guard, with Zac Epping moving over to center from that spot.

Long-range buzz

Quarterback/receiver MarQueis Gray has long been told that he's a potential NFL player, and lately he's begun hearing from others who believe it, too.

"The calls and [e-mails] from agents are starting to come in," Gray said this week. "I just defer them until after the season. I'll talk to them after our bowl game or our [team] banquet or something. I'm just worried about finishing my career here."

And his coach is worried about agents not tampering with the Gophers. NCAA rules prohibit players from hiring an agent, and Kill said he takes precautions before every season to make sure players understand rules about hiring agents or accepting gifts or loans, and the consequences to violating them.

"I've brought in an agent I trust. He gets up and tells them, 'I can't get you to the NFL.' An agent can't do that, no matter [the promises]," Kill said. "We talk to the kids all the time. They're not [allowed to attend] practice. You just educate them the best you can from Day 1."

  • NOTES

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Brooklyn 109 FINAL
Boston 107
Cleveland 98 FINAL
Orlando 89
Indiana 109 FINAL
Detroit 119
Milwaukee 107 FINAL
Atlanta 77
Houston 117 FINAL
Memphis 111
San Antonio 90 FINAL
New Orleans 97
Charlotte 75 FINAL
Oklahoma City 98
LA Lakers 98 FINAL
Dallas 102
Minnesota 102 FINAL
Denver 106
Philadelphia 93 FINAL
Portland 114
Phoenix 115 FINAL
Sacramento 106
Illinois 18 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 35
Rutgers 40 FINAL
North Carolina 21
NC State 34 FINAL
UCF 27
Cincinnati 12:00 PM
Virginia Tech
(15) Arizona State 1:10 PM
Duke
Miami-Florida 2:30 PM
So Carolina
Boston College 3:30 PM
Penn State
(25) Nebraska 7:00 PM
(24) USC
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Houston 1/2/15 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Iowa 1/2/15 2:20 PM
Tennessee
(11) Kansas State 1/2/15 5:45 PM
(14) UCLA
Washington 1/2/15 9:15 PM
Oklahoma State
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

<
Gophers Football Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.X24-7
Sep 27 - at Michigan 2:30 pmX30-14
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern 11 amX24-17
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 amX39-38
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 amX28-24
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa 11 amX51-14
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State 11 amX31-24
Nov 22 - at Nebraska 11 amX28-24
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin 2:30 pmX34-24
Jan 1 - vs. Missouri noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: What's your favorite Gophers football uniform colors?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close