Gophers spring football replay

  • Updated: April 27, 2013 - 11:31 PM

Derrick Engel (18), celebrating a TD catch with Marek Lenkiewicz (74) and Joe Bjorklund, could be a factor among the Gophers receiving corps.

Photo: BRUCE BISPING • Star Tribune ,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

spring replay


1Philip Nelson is the starting quarterback. But Mitch Leidner is a fully capable backup who can pass and run, making him another good fit for this offense. “It’s always going to be a competition; it’s been that way everywhere I’ve been,” coach Jerry Kill said Saturday. “Right now, it’s [Nelson’s] job. Somebody has to take it.”

2Their secondary remains a strength. This comes despite losing outgoing senior cornerbacks Michael Carter and Troy Stoudermire. Derrick Wells made the transition from safety to cornerback look easy. And despite getting beat on Logan Hutton’s touchdown catch Saturday, sophomore Eric Murray looks fully capable at the other corner.

3Ra’Shede Hageman is a beast. The defensive tackle decided against entering the NFL draft, and teammates say they’ve never seen the senior so focused. He will lead a line that should come at teams in waves, along with fellow starters Cameron Botticelli, Michael Afaefula, Theiren Cockran and a strong second string.


1Are their linebackers good enough for the Big Ten? The coaches like returning starter Aaron Hill and think they’ll be OK at middle linebacker with Jack Lynn and Damien Wilson. But with James Manuel and Lamonte Edwards still inconsistent, the door is open for an incoming recruit such as De’Vondre Campbell or De’Niro Laster to start.

2Can they find more playmakers at wide receiver? Derrick Engel, Isaac Fruechte, Jamel Harbison and KJ Maye keep getting better, but Andre McDonald’s status is uncertain. The Gophers hope an incoming recruit such as Drew Wolitarsky, Eric Carter or Donovohn Jones can be a difference-maker at receiver.

3Can their offensive linemen stay healthy? Ed Olson (ankle surgery) and Zach Mottla (broken leg) missed spring camp. Jonah Pirsig (knee cap injury) and Brian Bobek (illness) were eventually sidelined. Jon Christenson played through an ankle injury. The Gophers like their offensive line depth, but it keeps getting tested.


  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Miami - LP: T. Koehler 5 FINAL
Washington - WP: M. Scherzer 7
Arizona 9 Top 6th Inning
Colorado 2
San Diego 5 Bottom 4th Inning
San Francisco 1
Arizona - R. Ray 5:40 PM
Colorado - J. Lyles
Cincinnati - M. Leake 6:05 PM
Pittsburgh - G. Cole
NY Yankees - C. Sabathia 6:07 PM
Toronto - M. Buehrle
Philadelphia - J. Williams 6:10 PM
Atlanta - M. Foltynewicz
Baltimore - U. Jimenez 6:10 PM
NY Mets - J. deGrom
Tampa Bay - A. Colome 6:10 PM
Boston - J. Masterson
Los Angeles - J. Wieland 7:10 PM
Milwaukee - W. Peralta
Cleveland - C. Carrasco 7:10 PM
Kansas City - D. Duffy
Detroit - A. Simon 7:10 PM
Chicago WSox - C. Sale
Oakland - S. Kazmir 7:10 PM
Minnesota - K. Gibson
Texas - C. Lewis 7:10 PM
Houston - S. Deduno
Chicago Cubs - J. Lester 7:15 PM
St. Louis - L. Lynn
Seattle - R. Elias 9:05 PM
LA Angels - C. Wilson
Chicago 6:00 PM
LA Clippers 8:30 PM
Montreal 6:00 PM
Tampa Bay
NY Rangers 6:30 PM
Los Angeles 8:30 PM
Real Salt Lake
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: Does it bother you that Tyus Jones chose Duke over Minnesota?

Weekly Question