Category: Gophers Football


With the deal finalized we can all take a big sigh of relief. The lawmakers did the right thing, and the Vikings will be around for at least another 30 years. Which really gives us here at MinneSPORTa something to talk about in that time frame. Continue reading

 Rick Spielman is at it again! Making another monster signing in the name of Anthony Jacobs, via ESPN. Okay, we will settle down a bit. Jacobs is a former Gopher defensive lineman who will was lucky enough to stick on after rookie mini-camp. The question is now whether he can stay on after preseason and make the final roster. Nevertheless, he has a good chance of at least making the practice squad and could go the route of Marcus Sherels to make the team down the road.

 Jacobs started all 12 games as a senior finishing with 26 tackles (6 for loss), 1 sack and 2 forced fumbles.

Image courtesy of GopherSports.com

 The Minnesota Gophers officially announced their new Athletic Director Norwood Teague to replace Joel Maturi. On February 2nd, Maturi made the announced he is stepping down effective July 1st and the Gophers have been looking for a replacement since.

 Teague was the AD with Virginia Commonwealth (VCU) since 2006 and helped VCU become a powerhouse in the Colonial conference. According to ESPN, under Teague, VCU’s athletic annual fund has grown more than 119 percent, with averaging more than 20 percent annually. He has also led the campaign to build a $10 million practice facility for men’s and women’s basketball and other sports. He didn’t have a football program during his time as AD.

 His first big choice as AD will be whether or not to extend Tubby Smith. Smith has already been in talks of a contract extension before Teague’s arrival.

 The Minnesota Gophers have released the roster for the upcoming spring football game. The game will feature Maroon versus Gold and as far as starters go, their isn’t many surprises. I was pleased to see RB James Gillum on the Maroon team. Gillum is a junior college transfer and someone who I predicted could have a good season if he gets playing time and stays healthy. My other predictions, Jonah Pirsig and Andre McDonald, are both not suiting up. This is expected as they are both Freshmen. The other freshman who made it is QB Mitch Leidner but this speaks more towards MarQueis Gray’s playing time during the spring game. Some recent recruits did make the reserve team (they are italicized). Check out the full list Continue reading

Joel Maturi said on Thursday that he will retire as Gophers Athletic Director as of June 30th and will remain at the university as an assistant to President Eric Kaler. Maturi and Kaler will hold a press conference Thursday at 11am CT at TCF Bank Stadium. Maturi has had some good hires and some bad hires but the fans of course will always remember the bad. One big move he made was extending Lucia’s contract after a bad season last year and the team has rebounded to the top of the WCHA. He also brought in Tubby Smith as basketball coach which hasn’t turned out like the fans expected but bringing him to the program was a big move for Maturi. I think the move he will be judged on however is the hiring of Tim Brewster in 2007 after firing Glen Mason, and we all know how that turned out. Athletic Directors do a lot of work behind the scenes with the athletic department and Maturi has had a lot of success with that, but many fans will only remember him for the lack of success he had hiring coaches that could win games for the program in football and basketball. One thing to watch for is if the university will extend Tubby Smith as basketball coach. Tubby’s contract is up after the season and Kaler said they will not make any coaching decisions until the new Athletic Director is hired.

This year marks the first official recruiting class for Jerry Kill as the head coach of the Gophers. Last year he did have a chance to mix in some of his own with Tim Brewster’s class but this one is all his. Grading recruiting classes has become extremely popular and remains pointless. Right now the Gophers are the last ranked team in the Big 10 according to rivals.com in terms of recruiting (Which is 12th ranked in the Big 10, yeah it gets confusing).  On top is the usual Ohio State and Michigan while, conversely, Wisconsin is 7th. I am not trying to say anything about these teams’ future success just saying recruiting does not necessarily dictate success. Kill has done one of the most important things this year that Brewster and Mason could never accomplish, he kept Minnesota’s talent in state. Nine of eleven of Minnesota’s top recruits will be a Golden Gopher. It usually takes about two years to fully asses a recruiting class so we will have to wait until 2014 to fully grade Kill’s offseason.

A few names to remember who could eventually have big impacts.

Jonah Pirsig, OT: Continue reading

While it isn’t necessarily Minnesota news, it still is a sad day in the college football world. According to sources, Joe Paterno has passed away. Joe Paterno was dealing with lung cancer and at some point he started facing complications. His family spent the final minutes with him. Most people, unfortunately, will remember all the sexual allegations that are facing Penn State when they think of Paterno. The 85 year old Paterno spent 61 years at Penn State, 46 years as head coach. As time passes, the issues at Penn State will focus more on those directly responsible and Paterno greatness will become truly recognized.