Gophers wide receiver Connor Cosgrove, son of the team's co-defensive coordinator Kevin Cosgrove, has been diagnosed with leukemia and is beginning chemotherapy treatments immediately, Minnesota coach Tim Brewster said Wednesday.
"Connor is a special young guy," Brewster said. "He's got a hell of a battle in front of him, and we're going to help him get it done."
The 19-year-old freshman, an all-state high school player at Edgewood, Wis., spent last season at St. Cloud State, but transferred to Minnesota this fall to be with his father, and joined the team as a non-scholarship player. He hadn't been feeling well lately, Brewster said, so the team had him undergo a series of tests. "Unfortunately, they came back and showed he has an acute form of leukemia," Brewster said. "It's a difficult situation."
Kevin Cosgrove missed practice Tuesday after learning the news, but returned to coach the defense on Wednesday and plans to call the defensive plays Saturday as usual against USC. "Kevin's going to spend time at the hospital with his son, but he'll continue with the preparation," Brewster said. "Kevin's trying to be strong for his family and his son, and he will be. But it's obviously a shock. We're going to help him through a tough situation."
The news comes just a week after Terry Hoese, father of senior fullback Jon Hoese, died after a stroke. "This team has been challenged awfully hard," Brewster said. "But it's life. Dealing with life's challenges is something we all have to do, and we'll rally together and get it done."