Gophers SQUUUUUEEEEK Out Win vs Georgia Southern in a Game They Didn’t Deserve…

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It was a beautiful afternoon for football at TCF Bank Stadium, with the Georgia Southern Eagles strolling into town for their first-ever matchup vs the Gophers. The game didn’t start as beautiful as the weather, though. After forcing a 3-and-out, Tanner Morgan nearly threw an interception on Minnesota’s first play from scrimmage, then followed that up with an actual interception, that the Eagles then used to score and go up 7-0.

Morgan came back strong, though. He hit his old trusty target, Tyler Johnson, for two touchdowns in the 1st quarter and it was a 14-10, entering the 2nd. The Gophers moved the ball with relative ease, even with co-starter Mo Ibrahim sitting out with a leg injury. Speaking of running backs, Cam Wiley got the first two carries of his young Gopher career in the first half too.

Daniele Faalele helped Seth Greene into the endzone, on a wildcat run from the 5, later in the half, to make it 21-13 but the end of the half got REALLY dicey and made you question the entire coaching staff in the first half of this game. 

When Morgan threw the INT early in the game, he never should have been passing it. Not against this team. Then, on 4th and 1 around their own 30-yard-line and time running out in the first half, the Gophers went for it and couldn’t convert. They turned the ball over on downs and then gave up a touchdown, making it 21-20 entering halftime.

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I was hoping to run away with it in the 3rd quarter but that’s not what happened. More bad playcalling and poor play led to a scoreless 3rd quarter but it only took a few seconds into the 4th, for Bryce Williams to take in a half-yard score that put the good guys back on top by a TD + 2-pt conversion, 28-20. Let’s also remember that Georgia Southern’s last score in the 1st half never should have counted.

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The only way to describe the 4th quarter of this game is a mental rollercoaster. The playcalling was questionable, at best, and the Gophers had trouble moving the football behind their backup running backs, after Mo Ibrahim didn’t play, because of a leg injury and a concussion for Rodney Smith in the 1st half.

The Gophers looked like they were about to secure a victory with a 10 point lead, late in the 4th quarter until this blocked kick happened and changed everything..

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Suddenly, the Gophers needed Tanner Morgan again, and after a game where he played pretty poorly… he again came through in clutch time and drove the Gophers down the field before Tyler Johnson did Tyler Johnson things…

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So, the Gophers get a dub in a game they probably shouldn’t have…. but they are heading into Big Ten play undefeated. The rest of the season won’t finish so well, though if they don’t figure out a lot of things over the next two weeks, before they travel to Purdue on the 28th…

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan

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