Chris Autman-Bell made his season debut and Tyler Nubin made a game-clinching interception as the Gophers rebounded for a 20-13 victory over Purdue on Saturday afternoon.
Autman-Bell caught a pair of passes for 40 yards after missing the first two games with a lower-body injury but he got the Gophers on the board early when he caught a 32-yard pass from Tanner Morgan to give Minnesota a 7-0 lead.
The Boilermakers stormed back with a field goal from Mitchell Fineran and a seven-yard touchdown pass from Aidan O'Connell to Milton Wright gave Purdue a 10-7 advantage. After both teams exchanged field goals, Minnesota went into the locker room down 13-10 at halftime.
A halftime deficit is usually a death sentence for the Gophers as P.J. Fleck came into today's game 0-17 when trailing at the half. But the Gophers responded and took the lead when Trey Potts ran it in from four yards out to put Minnesota ahead 17-13.
With the rain coming down, the Gophers held onto the lead as Fineran missed a 37-yard field goal. Matthew Trickett hit a kick of his own from 38 yards to extend the lead, setting up a final gasp for the Boilermakers.
With O'Connell leading Purdue down the field, Nubin sealed the game with an interception to help the Gophers rebound from last week's loss to Bowling Green.
The Gophers (3-2, 1-1 Big Ten) are on a bye next week before returning home to face Nebraska on Oct. 16.