The Gophers athletic department not only plans for the lights to be used for Gophers baseball games but also for other evening events, including high school and other college baseball games.
The Gophers football program will continue to recruit walk-ons with the incentive that they could qualify for scholarships if they do well in the classroom and on the football field.
This year’s team had five players who originally were walk-ons who earned scholarships. They are fullback Mike Henry, offensive linemen Jon Christenson and Caleb Bak, defensive lineman Cameron Botticelli and wide receiver Derrick Engel. Look for some walk-ons on the 2014 squad to be rewarded with scholarships.
• One situation that will put more money in the pockets of the Wilf family, owners of the Vikings, is that the family of the late Mike Lynn will no longer get a check for over $500,000 each season when the new football stadium opens. It was Lynn’s idea while working for the Vikings to put in the suites, and he got a percentage of the suite income every year. In fact, the Wilfs went to court to try to stop paying it without success.
• Lane Kiffin, the former Bloomington Jefferson star who was dismissed from the Southern California football coaching job, has landed a well-paid, prestigious job as offensive coordinator job for Nick Saban at Alabama. Former Crimson Tide OC Doug Nussmeier will hold the same position at Michigan.
• Cretin-Derham Hall defensive end Jashon Cornell, who is ranked by many high school scouting services as the top junior football player in the country, could be one of the first top-rated St. Paul football players to go to the University of Minnesota. Cornell has a good relationship with the Gophers staff.
• There is a good chance former Prior Lake center Carson Shanks, who has left the Utah State basketball program, will enroll at Minnesota this spring quarter. The 7-foot center redshirted this season after averaging 12 points and eight rebounds as a senior at Prior Lake.
• Former Gopher linebacker Mike Rallis is talking about joining a circuit of the Mixed Martial Arts fighters group.
• Dimonic McKinzy, the Kansas City Wyandotte quarterback who committed to Minnesota, will enroll in time to take part in spring practice. In his senior year, McKinzy passed for 2,527 and 26 touchdowns. He also is a good runner and rushed for 519 yards and nine touchdowns.
• In a recent issue, USA Today rated different college football programs on how well they did in 2013. The Gophers got an A; Purdue and Michigan were given D’s.
• Former Gopher Thomas Vanek had his 10-game points streak broken for the New York Islanders on Friday.