Vegas thought the Nebraska Cornhuskers were going to beat the Minnesota Gophers by 10.5 points today in Lincoln. Maybe the oddsmakers knew what we didn’t heading into Saturday. PJ Fleck told us the Gophers would be short 20+ players for today’s game but they were actually short 33.
Not only did Minnesota win this game, but they controlled it. “Dominate” would probably be too strong of a word, but the momentum was definitely in the Gophers’ favor throughout.
Starts with defense…?
It actually started on defense. The Minnesota running game was slow to get going and wide receivers were dropping passes, early. They needed a spark from elsewhere and they got it from Tyler Nubin. It was his first career INT.
Remember what I said about the slow start on the ground? You can’t hold Mo Ibrahim down for long.
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) December 12, 2020
Minnesota would take a 10-0 lead before Nebraska would put their first points on the board (a touchdown). But, they doubled up that first TD before the Gophers could counter and suddenly it was 14-10 Huskers.
That would be the last lead Nebraska would have in this game. The Gophers got a huge run by Cam Wiley on the next drive and that was finished out by Tanner Morgan and Brevyn Spann-Ford. Minnesota went into half-time with a 17-14 lead.
— Minnesota on BTN (@MinnesotaOnBTN) December 12, 2020
The score would actually stay the same through the 3rd quarter, as the Gopher defense surprisingly lead the way again. More big plays on offense were on the way in the 4th but the defense came up big first (again) just before the 3rd came to a close.
Then, in the first drive of the 4th quarter, Trey Potts looked like he got into the endzone on 1st down. Instead of asking for a review, however, PJ Fleck decided to hurry up on 2nd down, to just punch it in themselves.
It would take 4 downs, but the Gophers got in eventually, saving some big questions for Fleck to answer after the game.
And that’s pretty much it. The Minnesota Gophers would wind up on top 24-17 by the time the dust settled, leaving Vegas just 17.5 points off on the game’s spread.
PJ rode Mo Ibrahim to victory in the 4th quarter and he totalled 108 yards and 2 touchdowns on 20 carries. I can’t imagine Mo Ibrahim sticking around for 2021 so enjoy him while he’s here.
There’s one game left on the Big Ten schedule that is yet to be announced. It’s expected to be announced tomorrow and the Gophers’ opponent is unofficially going to be Wisconsin for an Axe Game re-do.
Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan