Date: Nov. 20, 2020
Time: 6:30 p.m. CT
Site: Minneapolis, Minn.
Stadium: TCF Bank Stadium
Series: Minnesota 39-33-3
Streak: Minnesota W2
Last: Minnesota won 38-31 on Sept. 28, 2019 in West Lafayette, Ind.
FIVE THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
1. Minnesota plays its third home game of the season on Friday when it faces Purdue. The game will be the 76th all-time meeting between the schools. Minnesota leads the series 39-33-3 and is 32-12-3 at home. Minnesota is 5-0 all-time against Purdue at TCF Bank Stadium with wins in 2009, 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2018. The Gophers last home loss to Purdue was a 45-31 setback at the Metrodome in 2007.
2. One of the most memorable games ever played in the series was in 1993 when Minnesota won 59-56 at home. Minnesota’s Scott Eckers made his first career start and threw for 402 yards (fifth most in school history) and six touchdowns (school record). Omar Douglas caught eight passes for 149 yards and five touchdowns (school record), while Chris Darkins rushed 30 times for 149 yards and one score. Justin Conzemius returned an interception for a touchdown, while Purdue’s Mike Alstott scored five times (four rushing). The game was tied 56-56 with 2:06 left. Minnesota drove 90 yards in eight plays and Mike Charlberg kicked the only field goal of the game (18 yards) to give Minnesota the win.
3. Mohamed Ibrahim leads the nation in rushing yards per game with an average of 178.8. He ranks 13th in the nation in rushing yards (715) despite playing in only four games. The 12 people above him have all played in seven or more games and the next closest individual who has played in only four games is Greg Bell of San Diego State, who is ranked 38th with 537 yards. Ibrahim ranks tied for seventh nationally in rushing touchdowns (10) and everyone ahead of him or tied with him has played in at least six games.
4. Mohamed Ibrahim has 10 career 100-yard rushing games, which includes a current streak of five in a row (rushed for 140 yards or more in 2020 Outback Bowl and first four games of the 2020 season). Ibrahim’s five-game streak is tied for the third-longest in program history with Rodney Smith (did it in 2019), Amir Pinnix, Thomas Hamner and Paul Giel. Laurence Maroney is the only Gopher ever with longer streaks, as he rushed for 100 yards in six straight games from 11/13/04 – 9/24/05 and in a school record seven straight games from 12/31/03 – 10/9/04.
5. According to ESPN Stats and Information, Mohamed Ibrahim is the first Big Ten player with 140 rushing yards in five straight games since Michigan’s Mike Hart in 2004. Ibrahim is also the first Big Ten player with at least 700 rushing yards through a team’s first four games of a season since Wisconsin’s Michael Bennett in 2000. Ibrahim leads the Big Ten in rushing attempts (130), rushing yards (715), rushing touchdowns (10) and scoring (60). Ibrahim’s 10 touchdowns have covered a collective 34 yards (16 and 5 yards against Michigan; 1, 2, 1 and 1 yards at Maryland and 1, 2, 1 and 4 at Illinois). His 26 career touchdowns (9 in 2018, 7 in 2019 and 10 in 2020) rank seventh in school history.
Gopher senior Phil Howard of Minneapolis made his first start at defensive back last week against Iowa, making three tackles and breaking up a pass. He spoke with MNN sports director Mike Grimm: