Football

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Minnesota will need its wide receivers to step up next year in order to compete.
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Wed, 03/26/2014
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At the start of the Gophers’ spring practice a few weeks ago, head coach Jerry Kill said his team’s offense will be much improved next season.

Mitch Leidner is the guy at quarterback after Philip Nelson’s transfer to Rutgers. David Cobb, fresh off a 1,000-yard rushing season, leads a loaded backfield. Maxx Williams and Drew Goodger return at tight end. And the offensive line boasts years of experience.

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The Gophers junior linebacker recorded 41 tackles in his first year with the team.
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Wed, 03/12/2014
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At nearly 6 feet 6 inches, with dreadlocks spilling out of the back of his helmet, Gophers junior linebacker De’Vondre Campbell looks like touted NFL prospect Jadeveon Clowney when he blitzes quarterbacks.

There are vast differences between Campbell and Clowney, a near-lock to be a top pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.

Still, many think Campbell has the potential to be a first-round pick down the road.

“He has a great future ahead of him if he keeps doing everything he needs to do,” head coach Jerry Kill said.

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Derrick Engel tore his ACL last year but has recovered relatively quickly.
Publish Date: 
Tue, 03/11/2014
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Derrick Engel leapt between two Cornhuskers defenders and reeled in a touchdown, helping the Gophers to a 34-23 win.

“It was definitely a good moment for me and the team,” he said. “It probably was my biggest play of the year.”

It was more like the defining moment of his career — but less than a month later, leaping for another pass ended it.

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The Gophers held their first of 15 spring practices Tuesday afternoon.
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Wed, 03/05/2014
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While the cold weather may not indicate it, spring has arrived — for the Gophers football team, at least.

Minnesota held its first of 15 spring practices Tuesday at the Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex. Those practices will culminate with the annual spring game, which is slated for April 12 at TCF Bank Stadium.

The Gophers started their spring season after a successful 2013 season, which ended just 68 days ago.

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Publish Date: 
Tue, 03/04/2014
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Sports reporters Sam Gordon, Dane Mizutani and Jack Satzinger recap Minnesota's Pro Day where Gopher athletes including Brock Vereen and Ra'shede Hageman perform drills in front of NFL recruits at the Gibson/Nagurski Football Practice Facility on Monday, March 3, 2014. <a href="http://www.mndaily.com/sports/football/2014/03/04/gophers-stand-out-pro-day">Read the full story.</a>
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Ra’Shede Hageman and Brock Vereen headlined Minnesota’s lineup.
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Tue, 03/04/2014
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Ra’Shede Hageman and Brock Vereen turned heads with their physical attributes at last month’s NFL Combine. And at the Gophers’ Pro Day on Monday morning, they showcased their football skills to 19 NFL teams.

“They always say, ‘You could run as fast as you can, you can bench 500 times, but if you can’t carry it over to the football field, it doesn’t mean anything,’” Vereen said.

Vereen led all safeties in the bench press at the NFL Combine with 25 reps. He also flashed his speed with a 4.47-second time in the 40-yard dash.

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The Gophers had nine players work out for scouts Monday morning.
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Tue, 03/04/2014
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While a majority of scouts showed up to evaluate defensive lineman Ra’Shede Hageman and defensive back Brock Vereen, Monday’s Pro Day also afforded lesser-known players a chance to turn some heads.

“It [all] comes down to competition,” former defensive lineman Roland Johnson said. “It’s great to get out there and compete with the big dogs.”

Johnson wowed spectators and teammates when he bench-pressed 225 pounds, 40 times.

“Thank God,” he said with a grin, “but I was trying to get 50.”

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Tue, 02/25/2014
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Gophers assistant head coach and linebackers coach Bill Miller is bolting from Minneapolis to join Tim Brewster and the top-ranked Florida State football program.

Jerry Kill’s new contract will almost certainly ensure the rest of his assistants don’t do the same.

While speaking to members of the media for the first time since National Signing Day a few weeks ago, Kill addressed the implications of the new deal and how it will affect his assistant coaches.

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There are clauses in the new contract that address Jerry Kill’s health issues.
Publish Date: 
Tue, 02/25/2014
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Gophers head football coach Jerry Kill said his brother called him after he and the University of Minnesota agreed to a new contract.

“You ain’t worth that,” his brother said.

Still, after adding a year to the head coach’s old contract and bumping his salary to $2.1 million for the 2014-15 season, it appears the University of Minnesota administration thinks Kill is worth it.

Kill spoke to the media Monday afternoon for the first time since signing his new deal.

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The head football coach will stay five more seasons and make $2.1 million next year.
Publish Date: 
Mon, 02/24/2014
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Gophers head football coach Jerry Kill and the University of Minnesota have agreed to restructure the coach’s contract, athletics director Norwood Teague announced Saturday afternoon.

That new contract adds a year to Kill’s current contract, extending it through the 2018-19 season. It also increases the coach’s pay to $2.1 million for the 2014-15 season.

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The new deal adds a year to the contract and will increase the coach's pay in 2014-15.
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