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Walk-on freshman making noise in Gophers QB competition

Zack Annexstad didn't even get a full scholarship to play at MN.

Lost in the commotion surrounding Seth Green's move from quarterback to tight end is that a true freshman appears to be giving himself a real chance to start as Gophers quarterback. 

With Green now a tight end, the QB competition is down to three: redshirt freshman Tanner Morgan, sophomore Vic Viramontes and true freshman Zack Annexstad.

Related: 

Seth Green moves from quarterback to tight end

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Morgan has been taking first-team reps during spring practice, but Annexstad has started stealing some backup reps from Viramontes. 

"He's a good looking quarterback," head coach P.J. Fleck said Tuesday before mentioning that Annexstad was the starter at IMG Academy over another QB who received a scholarship to a Big Ten school. 

"This guy (Annexstad) beat him out. Head-to-head beat him out. And the guy who got the scholarship was sitting on the bench while he was playing." 

Annexstad, the younger brother of Gophers wide receiver Brock Annexstad, was recruited from IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, where 247 Sports ranked him the 45th-best pro-style quarterback recruit in Florida. 

But he's not from Florida. He's a Norseland native, growing up in the unincorporated south-central Minnesota town near Mankato where the speed limit only dips to 40 mph when you drive through.

He was the starting quarterback at Mankato West as a sophomore for two games before a sprained ankle rerouted his season, and he played his junior and senior years at IMG Academy. 

“Nothing rattles (Annexstad), nothing,” Fleck added, via the Pioneer Press. “I think he was maybe one of the best ones in terms of the two-minute (drill). It looked like he had been out there for five years.”

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