As players hooted and hollered in the adjacent visitors locker room, media members gathered in the bowels of Camp Randall Stadium, waiting for Gophers coach P.J. Fleck and players to discuss their 37-15 dismantling of Wisconsin.
Wafting from the locker room on Nov. 24, 2018, was the smell of a nightclub, heavy with the odor of cologne.
Suddenly, the connection hit. Paul Bunyan's Axe. Axe Body Spray.
Yep, Fleck had armed his players with cans of the product, and they began spraying the celebratory scents after the Gophers broke the Badgers' 14-year grip on the coveted trophy.
"When you hold the Axe," Fleck declared, "now you know why everybody wants it so much."
While the scents and sounds framed the postgame story, the sights on the field produced the upset. Here were the most memorable:
•The Gophers played keep-away: Minnesota held the ball for 35 minutes, 6 seconds to Wisconsin's 24:54. Through three quarters, Minnesota led 23-7, with a 10-play drive, two nine-play marches and an eight-play advance playing key roles.
Then came the fourth-quarter hammer. The Gophers took over at their 35-yard line with 14:53 left in the fourth quarter and went on a 15-play, 55-yard march. Though Emmit Carpenter would miss a 28-yard field-goal attempt, the Gophers drained 9:16 off the clock.
•Advantage, Ibrahim: Wisconsin's Jonathan Taylor, the nation's leading rusher last year, carried 19 times for 120 yards with no touchdowns and could not surpass 2,000 yards for the season. His Minnesota counterpart, Mohamed Ibrahim, rushed 26 times for 121 yards, including a 10-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-1 that gave the Gophers a 10-0 lead. Ibrahim was especially effective in the second half, when he carried 19 times for 86 yards, including nine times for 31 yards on that 15-play, fourth-quarter march.
•Quick strike: In what Fleck called the game's biggest play, Demetrius Douglas returned a punt 69 yards for a TD and 17-0 Gophers lead with 1:05 left in the first half. Suddenly, the upset seemed likely.
•Mistakes bite Badgers: From the game's first drive, a Wisconsin team that was ranked No. 4 in the 2018 Associated Press preseason poll showed why it already carried four losses. The Badgers marched to Minnesota's 13 only to have kicker Rafael Gaglianone miss a 31-yard field-goal attempt.
Then there was quarterback Alex Hornibrook, who had missed the previous two games because of a concussion. Harassed by Gophers pressure, Hornibrook was not at all sharp, throwing three interceptions, losing a fumble and being sacked twice. Hornibrook transferred to Florida State after the season.
•Cashman's impact: Gophers senior linebacker Blake Cashman, who a week earlier made 20 tackles against Northwestern, saw his season end early when he was ejected for targeting when he hammered Jack Dunn just after the ball arrived on punt coverage. The hit fired up the Gophers sideline, and Cashman's replacement, senior Julian Huff, filled in admirably with an interception and four tackles.
In the end, the Gophers got their first statement win of the Fleck era by playing a solid, physical game.
"When you're doing it to somebody in their own stadium and beating them at their own game," Fleck said a day later, "that's what we want to be able to do."