The RedHawks have either won or tied for the MAC Eastern Division title in five of the past eight seasons, but have lost 14 straight nonconference road games.
GOPHERS OFFENSE VS. MIAMI DEFENSE
The RedHawks had one of the top 50 passing defenses in the nation last year, and held a nationally ranked team to 129 passing yards and four passing first downs two weeks ago, so throwing the ball isn't the wisest course. But they gave up 72 rushing yards to Missouri's quarterback, and running is MarQueis Gray's strength, too. Expect another big day for the Gophers QB.
GOPHERS DEFENSE VS. MIAMI OFFENSE
The Gophers allow 3.1 yards per rush, one of the best marks in the Big Ten, and Miami picked up just 76 yards on the ground last week. Expect the RedHawks to try to exploit Minnesota's difficulty in pressuring the quarterback by going with a series of short passes. Advantage: Miami
Miami kicker Mason Krysinski is 0-1 on field goals and point-after attempts, and the RedHawks are averaging only 33.5 yards per punt. The Gophers aren't much better on field goals -- Chris Hawthorne is 1-for-4 -- but the punting of Dan Orseske has been a strength. Advantage: Gophers
Miami knows it can beat a Jerry Kill-led program, having upset Northern Illinois in the MAC championship game last year, and the players surely gained confidence with a strong game at Missouri. But the Gophers should receive a lift from Kill's return to the sidelines. Advantage: Gophers
All three games played by these two teams this season have been relatively low-scoring affairs, and today's game should follow that pattern. Minnesota's challenge will be to get off to a strong start and make Gray comfortable in the pocket. Gophers21, RedHawks17
NUMBERS TO KNOW
0 Career wins by coaches Treadwell and Kill at their current schools
3 Sacks allowed in Miami's opener, which faces a team that has yet to sack a QB
DON'T FORGET ABOUT
Eric Lair Didn't have a reception for the first time since 2009 last week. Needs to be a bigger part of U game plan.