• Gophers football coach Jerry Kill was asked how he feels about his quarterback situation now that Philip Nelson has decided to transfer. “We feel very, very good about our football team and we feel very, very good about our quarterback situation,” Kill said. “It’s great with Mitch [Leidner] and I know he’s excited about leading our football team, and his job is to make sure he tutors Chris Streveler and [incoming freshman] Dimonic [McKinzy] and get them moving along, Conor Rhoda, and get them better. We feel good about our football team, we feel good about our quarterback situation, and as I said a year ago, we’ll be better. We’ll have a better football team overall, and that’s our job. We’ve improved it each year and we’ll continue to move it forward.”
• A week ago when Denver beat San Diego to advance to the AFC Championship Game, former Gopher Eric Decker muffed a San Diego onside kick, giving the Charges an opportunity to stay in the game. But Sunday, when the Patriots tried an onside kick, Decker grabbed the kick and held on. Decker also had a big day receiving with five receptions for 73 yards in the Broncos’ 26-16 victory, sending him to his first Super Bowl.
• In this week’s issue of Sports Illustrated, Apple Valley point guard Tyus Jones and Sydney Moss, the daughter of former Vikings receiver Randy Moss, were recognized as Faces in the Crowd, a feature section on some of the best high school and college athletes in the country. Jones was named for scoring 28 points in a victory in the Timberwolves Shootout. Moss was mentioned for recording her sixth double-double for Thomas More College in Kentucky.
• Some 72 former, current and minor league Twins players will be on hand Friday, Saturday and Sunday when the annual TwinsFest will be held for the first time at Target Field. Autographs and pictures with the players will be available, with tickets available for all sessions except Saturday, which is sold out.
• Former Gophers cornerback Tramaine Brock continues to be an important part of the San Francisco 49ers’ defensive backfield. Brock had six tackles in the Seahawks’ 23-17 victory over the 49ers on Sunday. During the regular season, Brock had 37 tackles and five interceptions.
• The Timberwolves are now 19-21, and what’s amazing is that with all of their struggles in close games, they have now won nine games by 20 or more points — most in the NBA — including their 98-72 drubbing of the Jazz on Saturday.
Sid Hartman can be heard weekdays on 830-AM at 7:40, 8:40 and 9:20 a.m. and on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. firstname.lastname@example.org