Gophers and Wildcats digging out after two straight losses


Back-to-back losses for both the Gophers and Northwestern means each team will be digging from the bottom up in the Big Ten Legends division for the foreseeable future.

Minnesota was thumped by Iowa and waxed at Michigan. The Wildcats lost a nail-biter to potential national champion Ohio State, then got destroyed by the Wisconsin Badgers.

Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald lightened the mood for his team by bringing 300 water balloons to a team meeting this week.

“You’ve got to have fun when you’re doing this, and obviously nobody enjoys not being successful,” Fitzgerald said, via WCCO. “But I think the hallmark of this squad has been our character and the way that we’ve responded. I talked to them about the glue that keeps everything together is having fun and enjoying the moment and the opportunities.”

The Gophers are hopeful that stability at the quarterback position will help them settle into an offensive groove. Mitch Leidner will make his second straight start. FOX Sports North reports that Minnesota's coaches felt Leidner was efficient enough against Michigan to warrant another start.

However, offensive coordinator Matt Limegrover told KFAN-FM 100.3 on Thursday that Philip Nelson will most likely play, too. Both Leidner and Nelson are listed as possible starters on the depth chart.

This could be a big game for Gophers defensive lineman Ra'Shede Hageman. Northwestern's offensive line allowed seven sacks last week against Wisconsin. As a team, the Wildcats' offensive mustered an embarrassing 11 punts, 10 first downs, two field goals and an interception.

Get to know Hageman better in this week's Golden Gopher production of "Brick-by-Brick."

Despite both teams standing at 4-2 overall, Vegas Insider's odds list the Wildcats as 12.5 point favorites.

Last season the Wildcats defeated the Gophers 21-13 at TCF Bank Stadium.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2021-10-21 at 5.14.36 PM

Mayor Carter announces COVID vaccine mandate for St. Paul city workers

It comes after Minneapolis announced the requirement for vaccines or regular testing for city workers in September.

two twelve medical center chaska GSV

Ridgeview cutting hours at 2 Minnesota urgent care locations

Hours of operation at a third location are also being shifted earlier.

Flickr - QFamily - Ben Jerrys

Latest to wade into Mpls. Question 2 debate is ... Ben & Jerry's?

The ice cream business said it supports the creation of a Department of Public Safety.

mickey moore driver's license shared

Mpls. candidate tries to 'set the record straight' about where he lives

Questions about Ward 9 candidate Mickey Moore's residency are quickly piling up.

Screen Shot 2021-10-21 at 1.49.16 PM

COVID-19 case rate drops in 51 of 87 Minnesota counties

Four of the 10 lowest case rates are metro-area counties.

unsplash - visitor patient doctor hospital emergency - crop

Allina mental health workers vote to unionize

Concerns over safety led the workers to unionize.

teacher, coronavirus, covid-19, school, classroom

Minnesota reports COVID deaths of teen student, 2 school staffers

Cases in schools rose again in the past week, though there are signs cases may have peaked.

Proctor football

Investigation of alleged misconduct on Proctor football team nears conclusion

The football team canceled its season and the coach subsequently resigned.

minnesota house of representatives

Minnesota House will continue hybrid operations, require masks in 2022

The Speaker of the House announced the plans in a memo to members and staff on Thursday.