• The Gophers rank No. 14 overall and No. 8 in the Class of 2018 football recruiting rankings, according to 247sports.com. The Gophers, who have eight commitments, trail Penn State, Ohio State, Northwestern and Wisconsin.
• Chris Wright, the president of the Timberwolves, reports that interest in the team is high. The past five home games have averaged about 14,000 in attendance, and Wright said the team has sold more than 700 new season tickets while also having a strong rate of renewals for current season-ticket holders.
• Twins President Dave St. Peter said that the team is looking to utilize Target Field in new ways this season, and one of those is the first football game to be played there. “I’m excited about football,” he said. “We’re going to play our first football game here on September 23, St. Thomas will host St. John’s and I expect we’ll set the all-time Division III football attendance record, and frankly I’ll be surprised if we don’t sell north of 25,000 seats for that football game. Really one of the great rivalries, one of the great sports events in the state of Minnesota every single year.” St. Peter added the team already has a commitment from North Dakota State to play a home game there in 2019.
• Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck said he plans to keep a high number of walk-ons. “One thing I think we did a nice job of at times at Western Michigan was the walk-ons. I think that’s really important for us,” he said. “We have done a tremendous job, our coaching staff has done a tremendous job of getting great walk-ons from the state of Minnesota and outside the state of Minnesota to come play for us.”
•Speaking of walk-ons, Eden Prairie football coach Mike Grant said that four of his former players will walk on with the Gophers: defensive tackle Quinn Coughlin, linebacker Dan Anderson, defensive back Tommy Fuller and tight end Clayton Witherspoon. Grant also said Kyle Connelly, a receiver, will walk on with Iowa.