Gophers Mop Up Rutgers to Remain Undefeated; Wisconsin Trips @ Illinois

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I hope you turned on the Big Ten Network today at 11 AM and sat your ass in front of the TV for 7 hours straight. If you did, then you got to see Wisconsin somehow lose to Illinois and afterwards, another convincing Gopher victory, this time over a really fucking bad Rutgers team. People laughed at SDSU and Fresno State earlier in the season… both of those teams would stomp on the 2019 Rutgers Scarlet Knights. It’s sad that they live in the Big Ten…

First, let’s talk about Wisconsin’s loss to the Illini. Jesus (Paul) Chryst, how does this happen? All of a sudden, Wisconsin forgot how to score or stop the run. This is a team that looked invincible leading up to this weekend.

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Once the Badgers got done losing to Illinois, the Gophers took care of Rutgers handily. I’m not going to go play by play or quarter by quarter because this game just got out of control. I’ll embed some highlights at the end of this blog. Here is what got me excited about today’s game.

  • Casey O’Brien: Look, this moment was awesome. If you don’t know about the Casey O’Brien story, you can read more here. This kid is a fucking miracle and the fact that he is on the football field, no matter the position, is awesome. Also, he’s not some out of shape kid that they just let hang out. Casey O’Brien looks like a fucking football player. I know this first-hand. And, what more can you say about PJ Fleck? If you still hate this guy… it’s a “you” problem.. as this tweeter so perfectly puts it:
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  • Rashod Bateman: Bateman is going to be a phenom. I don’t know how we are going to hold him here after next season, once he is eligible for the NFL Draft. If he continues on his current track, there’s no way he stays out of the 1st round with one more year under his belt. But don’t let that get you down. That’s what we want and we still have a lot of catches to celebrate before then.
  • Bland Bland Bland: I wasn’t the only one to notice this. It was getting pointed out all over the place and Seth pointed it out on his radio show and on Minnesota Sports & Stuff weeks ago. The Gophers have had a very bland gameplan for a lot of the bad teams they have played. That could be a reason why those early non-conference games were so close and why they were a little slow to get going in this game. At the same time, you have to wonder if that bland play vs. bad teams, has played into any of the blowout performances they’ve put up against the better teams on their schedule.
  • Antoine Winfield Jr.: This is another guy that I’m not sure we hold onto much longer. He put up another ridiculous performance today with 2 interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown. He damn-near recovered a fumble too. He is eligible for the draft after this season. With his performances, leadership, and family pedigree, I can’t imagine he’d last past day two in the draft, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he landed in the 1st either… Again, these are not problems. These things are absolutely unmeasurable when recruiting. Guys that are able to leave early for the draft… that doesn’t happen everywhere.

The Bad:

  • Kamal Martin: After getting named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week last week, Kamal left this game on a cart. That was really the only negative to come out of this game…

The Gophers will now welcome Maryland to TCF Bank Stadium next weekend and the stakes have never been higher. They haven’t been 7-0 since the 60’s, when they were winning national titles and now they have a great chance to have Penn State at home with an 8-0 record (after a bye week), if they can win next weekend vs the Terrapins. What a year to cover Gopher Football…. what a year to be a fan!

Make sure you are ready to packe the Bank next weekend boys and girls! We have a Big Ten West Championship to win!

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan

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