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Continued: Hartman: Allen says Vikings miss Winfield

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Last update: October 18, 2013 - 6:32 AM

Fitzgerald on Gophers

Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald was asked by the Chicago Tribune what he thought of the Gophers defense heading into their matchup this weekend.

“They’re a 4-3 attack-style defense, meaning they’re going to play a lot of man, those guys are going to attack up front,” Fitzgerald said. “Their linebackers play fast. Coach [Tracy] Claeys has been very successful this year. He’s done a great job. They try to make you play a little bit lefthanded, and I’m very impressed with their athleticism, their speed and their toughness.”

The other main concern for Northwestern’s offense is injuries to quarterback Kain Colter and running back Venric Mark, who have both been instrumental in the team’s offensive attack. Northwestern was averaging 39 points per game before putting up just six against Wisconsin last weekend.

Jottings

• As for the salaries of the three Vikings quarterbacks, Ponder’s base salary is $1.3 million this year and $1.8 million next season. Freeman is getting paid $2 million this year by theVikings in addition to his Buccaneers salary while Cassel’s base is $1.6 this year.

• Richard Pitino, the Gophers basketball coach, was an assistant coach under his dad, Rick Pitino, for two seasons when current Timberwolves rookie Gorgui Dieng was on the team. “The one thing about Gorgui is he has great skills, understands how to play, he is very professional and he’s a great kid,” Pitino said. “He’s the type of kid you want to be around, especially with an 82-game season like that. He brings a lot of things. Defensively, he’s a very good shot blocker, but offensively he has a great understanding of how to play. He was really good [at Louisville]. He had to be one of the better shot blockers in the Big East.”

• Former Wild forward Pierre-Marc Bouchard has an assist in his first five games for the N.Y. Islanders. … Former Gopher Nick Bjugstad played in his first game for Florida on Tuesday night and didn’t register a point. ... Former Wild defenseman Tom Gilbert has an assist in seven games for the Panthers. … Former Gopher Jordan Schroeder has played in only one of the Canucks’ first seven games.

• Twins second base prospect Eddie Rosario continues his tremendous season, hitting .333 through four games at the Arizona Fall League with five RBI. … Also on the Glendale Desert Dogs is Byron Buxton, who is hitting .222 through five games, but he does have four RBI and four runs scored to go along with a home run and a stolen base.

• Former Gopher Trevor Mbakwe played in his first game with Virtus Roma of Italy on Sunday. Mbakwe scored 11 points, grabbed four rebounds and blocked a shot in 20 minutes of play. Mbakwe also appeared in the team’s Eurocup game against Gravelines on Wednesday and scored four points in 22 minutes while grabbing seven rebounds.

 

Sid Hartman can be heard weekdays on 830-AM at 6:40, 7:40 and 8:40 a.m. and on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. shartman@startribune.com

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