I am not sure where to start with the Gophers Homecoming victory over the 11th ranked Purdue Boilermakers.
Whew. How many times over the years we have been that close and had it go the other way? How many games against Purdue have been wild and crazy? How many times have we shot ourselves in the foot? Again, that ’03 Michigan game haunts us all…
But not this time. This time we made mistakes, turnovers, penalties, and some questionable conservative play calling yet persevered.
I cannot say enough about the commitment that our Gopher football team showed on Saturday afternoon. That was an amazing performance, this game should go down in history as one of the best victories the program has had.
Running back Laurence Maroney was a workhorse, posting career highs in rushing (217 yards) and carries (46) and catches (five). He finished with 333 all-purpose yards. We were questioning why late in the game he was alternating so much with Russell. We had lost track of the amount of carries he had.
In the end zone where the student sections are was the following sign, “Maroney, Be Cool, Stay In School”.
Laurence Maroney has moved into 4th place in the ESPN.com Heisman poll.
College GameDay Final, ESPN’s end of the day college football production, Lou Holtz gave Laurence Maroney a “helmet sticker” for his performance. I believe that is the first time a Minnesota Golden Gopher football player has received that recognition.
There are quite a few stories online regarding the Gopher victory. Jim Souhan of the StarTribune has the best one that will give you an idea of what I saw and felt in my seats on the 25-yard line.
The following are links to other stories on the Gopher victory:
StarTribune.com, Gopher sports page
What follows are a few of the many game notes on GopherSports.com:
-The Maroon and Gold has amassed 300 yards rushing in four consecutive games.
-The Minnesota offense has produced 200 yards rushing in 23 of the last 29 games.
-With his career-high 217 rushing yards today, Laurence Maroney became only the sixth player in school history with 3,000 career rushing yards. He passed Marion Barber (1977 -80) to move into fifth place with 3,167 yards. Leading the list are Darrell Thompson (4,654 yards), Thomas Hamner (3,810), Marion Barber III (3,276) and Chris Darkins (3,235).
-Minnesota has forced a turnover in all four games this season and in five consecutive games.
-Minnesota has recorded at least one sack in eight straight games.
-The Golden Gopher defense allowed only 22 rushing yards in the first half.
-Cupito threw a career-high three touchdown passes today.
Later on this week I will have another posting regarding the game with more information on how the individual players performed and overcame obstacles.