GOPHERS HOST GEORGIA SOUTHERN
Date: Sept. 14, 2019
Time: 2:30 p.m. CT
Site: Minneapolis. Minn.
Stadium: TCF Bank Stadium
Series: First meeting
Traffic Note: There will be major nearby highway closures that take place this weekend.
10 p.m. Fri, Sept. 13 to noon Sat, Sept. 14
• Northbound I-35W is closed between Hwy 62 and I-94
10 p.m. Fri, Sept. 13 through 5 a.m. Mon, Sept. 16
• I-35W is closed in both directions between I-94 and Hwy 280
• The northbound ramp from University Ave SE & 4th St SE to northbound I-35W will be open.
PJ FLECK TALKS
MNN Sports Director Mike Grimm spoke with Gopher head coach PJ Fleck:
FIVE THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
1. Minnesota faces Georgia Southern for the first time ever when it welcomes the Eagles to TCF Bank Stadium on Saturday. The Gophers do have some recent history with Georgia though. Minnesota beat Georgia Tech 34-10 in the 2018 Quick Lane Bowl and has 12 Georgia natives on its roster. The 12 players are the most on the roster from any state other than Minnesota (Gophers have 41 players from Minnesota) and they have produced for the Maroon and Gold. The 12 players are: Rodney Smith, Shannon Brooks, Terell Smith, Chris Williamson, Rashod Bateman, Braelen Oliver, Samuel Pickerign, Justus Harris, Michael Lantz, Rashad Cheney Jr., Abi N-Okonji and DeAngelo Carter. Smith leads the Gophers in rushing (153 yards), while Bateman leads Minnesota in receiving (237 yards). Williamson returned an interception for a touchdown against South Dakota State and Lantz is the starting kicker for the Gophers and made the game-winning 37-yard field goal in double overtime last Saturday at Fresno State.
2. Minnesota is 10-0 all-time against teams from the Sun Belt conference, but has not faced a current Sun Belt foe since 2003 when it beat both Troy, 48-7, and Louisiana-Lafayette (now Louisiana), 48-14. Minnesota is 3-0 all-time against Louisiana and ULM. The Gophers are 2-0 all-time against Arkansas State and 1-0 against both Texas State and Troy.
3. Minnesota beat Fresno State 38-35 in double overtime last Saturday on the road. The Gophers have now won 17 straight nonconference games, which is the longest streak in the nation. Minnesota’s last nonconference loss was on Sept. 3, 2015, when it fell 23-17 at home to No. 2 TCU. The Gophers are 20-1 in their past 21 nonconference home games and have won 11 straight nonconference home games.
4. Dating back to last season, Minnesota has now won three straight games away from home for the first time since 2003. The Gophers beat Fresno State last Saturday night and ended 2018 with a road win at Wisconsin and a bowl win against Georgia Tech in the Quick Lane Bowl in Detroit. In 2003, Minnesota won four consecutive games away from home as it won on the road at Illinois, Northwestern, Penn State and Ohio. The Gophers also ended the 2002 season with a win against Arkansas in the Music City Bowl in Nashville, which means they won five straight games away from home from 12/30/02 to 10/25/03.
5. Rashod Bateman has played in 15 games and has 63 catches for 941 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. The fastest Gopher to reach 1,000 career yards was Ryan Thelwell. He played in seven games in 1994 and had 406 yards and then crossed 1,000 yards eight games into the 1995 season. Bateman is poised to become the 26th Gopher – and second fastest – to record 1,000 career receiving yards.
(info courtesy of Gopher Sports)
(photo courtesy of Gopher Sports – Brad Rempel)