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Gophers-Nebraska game dedicated to epilepsy awareness

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The Nebraska Cornhuskers are in town for their meeting with the Golden Gophers at TCF Bank Stadium on Saturday.

It will be an unusual game now that the contest is being dedicated to epilepsy awareness. It's the second consecutive year the Gophers have hosted such a game, according to the Pioneer Press.

They will raise money and awareness for the Epilepsy Foundation. The disease affects 60,000 Minnesotans and more than 3 million across the country.

"I think it's going to be really fun to meet all the players, go out onto the field in front of 50,000 people and just be with members of the team who actually know about epilepsy," said Alex Fischer, a middle school student from Wayzata who has epilepsy. "They know what it is because coach Kill has talked to his players about it. It'll probably be a warm environment for me."

Minnesota head coach Jerry Kill will be at the game as a spectator. He remains on leave from the team in an effort to gain better control over his epilepsy. Kill hasn't coached since suffering a seizure before the game at Michigan earlier this month.

“I have to work my way through this thing,” Kill told Sid Hartman of the Star Tribune. “It’s been tough.”

Hartman wrote that Kill "looked great" when he met with him this week, and his gut-feeling is that Kill will be coaching again in the near future.

As for the game, acting head coach Tracy Claeys still hasn't named a starting quarterback. The depth chart the team released Thursday listed both Philip Nelson and Mitch Leidner as the starter.

Running back Roderick Williams is questionable with a foot injury, so David Cobb could see a bigger workload.

The matchup might bring back some brutal memories for the longtime Gopher faithful. Remember that 84-13 shellacking the Huskers put on Minnesota 30 years ago in 1983?

It should not be that bad this week, but the Vegas oddsmakers have made Nebraska a 10-point favorite. The over/under for total points scored is set at 52.

If Minnesota can't beat Nebraska, at least they can walk away saying they did well in their classes. As the Pioneer Press reports, the Gophers' football and basketball teams improved their Academic Progress Rate.

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