Gophers Koi Perich Snags Interception, Blocks Punt in All-American Bowl MVP Performance

Photo: @Gopherated - Twitter

Koi Perich is one of the best Minnesota Gophers high school football signees in program history, which goes back over 120 years. During his junior and senior seasons at Esko, MN near Duluth, the 6-1, 200 lb safety blossomed into one of the best and most heavily sought after defensive backs in the country, for the 2024 class.

Like many of the best 2024 high school football recruits in the country, many of which will start their college careers this week, Koi Perich is in San Antonio, TX (AlamoDome) today, playing in the All-American Bowl, which is being nationally televised on NBC as I type this article.

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And unsurprisingly, it didn’t take the Minnesota kid long to show why helmet schools were trying to steal him out from PJ Fleck’s nose all summer and fall, leading up to National Signing Day.

Koi Perich Shows Out at All-American Bowl

With over four minutes remaining in the 1st quarter, Wake Forest QB commit (3-star) Jeremy Hecklinski tried to thread the needle over the middle of the field, and found out the hard way how bad of an idea that is when Perich is on patrol.

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But Koi Perich wasn’t done putting on his first half show, following that interception. He also recorded one first half tackle for loss. Then, in the 2nd quarter, the East lined up for a punt and Koi Perich came on the punt block. Guess what happened next…

When the dust settled on the 2024 All-American Bowl, Perich was named game MVP after the West held off a dramatic East comeback that never would have been possible had Koi not been on the field.

Official statistics have not yet been released by Perich finished with at least 1 interception, 1 blocked punt, 1 tackle for loss and 2 passes defended (both of which would have been touchdowns).

I’m still not entirely sure how PJ Fleck held onto Perich’s commitment following his trip to Ohio State just a couple of weekends prior to National Signing Day. But no doubt, it could go down as one of the biggest high school recruiting wins of his coaching career, right up there with Rashod Bateman and Mar’Keise “Bucky” Irving.

Minnesota had two other 2024 signees representing the newest Gophers recruiting class in San Antonio this weekend. Defensive lineman Riley Sunram (North Dakota) and offensive lineman Brett Carroll (Kansas) are competing as well.

Related: Minnesota Gophers Recruiting Class – 2024

Here is how the internet is reacting to Perich’s big day at the AlamoDome:

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