Saturday, December 21, 2019

Fleck Year 3, Part 1: Where It's At

Evaluating where Minnesota is at in Year 3 of the Fleck era. In future parts we'll look at where we could have gone, and where we are vs. vs. historical Minnesota coaches.

The conference season is over, signing day has come and gone, and Bowl Season has begun. While we wait for the Outback Bowl, I want to start taking stock of where Minnesota is in P.J. Fleck’s third year at the helm. Let’s look at the other programs that are also on their third year and see how we compare.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

The Game and Where We Go From Here

Let’s get the nasty part out of the way first. The two losses that marred an otherwise incredible season for Minnesota shared a handful of features in common. Minnesota was out-schemed by teams that comprehended the Gopher’s strengths and weaknesses and schemed to put points on the board quickly. Minnesota also called a conservative offensive game that got away from many of the facets that made its offense so successful earlier in the season, making uncharacteristic decisions (a 50-yard FG attempt against Iowa and a punt from the 35 yard line against Wisconsin, both early in the game). Offensive line injuries compounded the challenge of mounting a comeback and magnified the effect of other mystifying decisions such as multiple running calls against Wisconsin from 3rd and long. For whatever reason, whether the intimidation of the big stage, distraction of national media attention, or old-fashioned nerves, the Minnesota that owned most of the game against Penn State was mostly absent.