Former Gophers quarterback Demry Croft announced via Twitter on Sunday morning that he is transferring to Tennessee State.
The Rockford, Ill., native will have two years of eligibility left at Tennessee State, a Football Championship Subdivision school in Nashville that plays in the Ohio Valley Conference. Because he is transferring to a lower-division school, Croft will not have to sit out a season and will be eligible to play in 2018.
Croft started the final six games of the 2017 season for the Gophers before asking for and receiving his release following the season-ending loss to Wisconsin. Croft began the season as the co-starting QB with senior Conor Rhoda and played in the first two games but was suspended by P.J. Fleck for two games for an undisclosed disciplinary violation and didn't see action in a third game after being reinstated.
Croft replaced Rhoda in the second quarter of the Oct. 14 game against Michigan State and threw three fourth-quarter touchdown passes in the 30-27 loss. He made his first start against Illinois in a 24-17 Gophers win, but struggled, going 5-for-15 for 47 yards and a TD with two interceptions.
His best game was in Minnesota's 54-21 rout of Nebraska; he rushed 10 times for 183 yards and three TDs, including a 73-yarder.
The rushing total was a school record for a quarterback. He also completed nine of 15 passes for 105 yards against the Cornhuskers.
Croft went 2-4 in his six Big Ten starts, completing five or fewer passes in four of them, and he had three games of 47 or fewer passing yards. He finished the season 51-for-123 passing for 674 yards and four TDs with seven interceptions. He rushed 79 times for 311 yards and four TDs.
U.S. juniors to play
Defenseman Ryan Lindgren and forward Casey Mittelstadt of the Gophers will join the U.S. national junior team this week.
The team will play two pretournament games, facing Belarus on Wednesday in Jamestown, N.Y., and Sweden on Friday in Erie, Pa.