Player News

Date:

ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. wrote that we should not be surprised if Minnesota senior QB Mitch Leidner is a first-rounder in 2017.

Kiper and colleague Todd McShay might be sharing a brain (or, if nothing else, notes), as the same week that the former pushed Leidner as a potential surprise non-surprise first-rounder, the latter mocked the 6-foot-4, 237-pounder to pick No. 25, which would be held by the Cowboys according to Vegas Super Bowl odds (a reliable metric if there ever was one). Last season, Leidner threw for 2,701 yards (59.5% completions) with a 14/10 TD/INT ratio. We really don't see a first-rounder here, though he does have the sort of frame and physical style of play that would make him worth a developmental selection after Day 1 in 2017.
May 21 - 7:46 PM

Minnesota HC Tracy Claeys said, "I believe this is our best football team since we’ve been here."

Minnesota finished 6-7 last year, but Claeys has raised the bar -- considerably -- for the coming season. When asked how many wins he foresees, he said, "It’s hard to put a number on it. Eight to 10 wins. Well, you win nine, and for around here they (haven’t) won 9 games in a (heck of a) long time." In this case, a "heck of a long time" stretches back over a decade. The team last won that many in 2003. Claeys is hoping that they will be in contention for the Big 10 this time around. "We’ve got this thing to where each year when you get to November, we should be in the talk of still playing for the championship of the Big Ten West."
May 19 - 2:58 PM

Minnesota HC Tracy Claeys said redshirt senior QB Mich Leidner (foot) will be 100-percent when upperclassmen begin pre-camp work in early June.

Leidner is rehabbing from the minor foot surgery he underwent following the team's win over Central Michigan in the Quick Lane Bowl. The 6-foot-4, 237-pounder posted a 14/10 TD/INT ratio last year.
May 16 - 1:45 PM

Former Minnesota redshirt sophomore WR Jeff Jones was arrested and charged with felony drug possession.

Jones was arrested on Thursday and officially charged on Friday. Making the matter all the more distressing, he had a firearm on his person at the time of his arrest, which would mean a minimum of three years in prison if convicted. During his time with the Gophers, academic issues and injuries marred what could have been a promising career. He ranked as Rivals' No. 7 RB recruit for the 2014 cycle. In January, he transferred to Iowa Western Community College, but was dismissed from the team in April due to a violation of team rules. He is also facing an assault charge from March. Thursday's arrest might have ended his college career unless he is somehow able to fly free and clear from these serious legal problems.
May 14 - 4:00 PM

Syracuse AD Mark Coyle has accepted the same position at Minnesota.

Syracuse HC Dino Babers offered a succinct enough response to the news when contacted by ESPN's Brett McMurphy, saying, "Are you serious? No comment." We wouldn't blame Babers for being a little irked, as Coyle was on the job with the Orange for less than a calendar year. He plans on starting up with the Gophers after Memorial Day. The 47-year-old Iowa native has prior ties with Minnesota, having served as associate AD of external relations with the school from 1999-2005. "I've been in this a long time. We love this place," Coyle said, adding that Minnesota is a "very special place."
Source: ESPN.com
May 12 - 12:17 PM

Jaguars sign Minnesota CB Briean Boddy-Calhoun.

Boddy-Calhoun (5'10/193) was a two-year starter in the Gophers' secondary, piling up nine interceptions and 15 pass breakups across his final two seasons. The ballhawk showed plus athleticism in Indy, blazing 4.47 with a 10-foot-4 broad jump and 35-inch vertical. On game tape, Boddy-Calhoun allowed too much separation when aligned on the perimeter, and will have to become a full-time NFL slot corner. He'll open his career covering punts and kicks.
May 4 - 4:04 PM

Vikings signed Minnesota DE Theiren Cockran.

Cockran (6'5/247) started 37 games for the Gophers, earning honorable mention All-Big Ten as a senior and finishing his career with 25 tackles for loss, including 15.5 sacks. Cockran helped himself at Minnesota's Pro Day, running 4.82 with a 37-inch vertical and 10-foot-1 broad jump. Based on his athletic measurables, Cockran should've been more productive as a Gopher. Long armed (33 7/8") with obvious up-field burst, Cockran is a worthwhile edge-rusher investment who could turn out to be a better pro than college player.
May 4 - 2:00 PM

Giants signed Minnesota WR K.J. Maye.

Maye (5'8/191) played tailback, receiver, and special teams at Minnesota, compiling a career rushing line of 51/266/2 (5.2 YPC) with 107/1,190/6 (11.1 YPR) receiving. Maye's ordinary athleticism showed up at his Pro Day, managing a 4.65 forty with a 33-inch vertical and 9-foot-5 broad jump. Maye draws strong marks for his work ethic and intangibles, but he is small and lacks dynamic traits.
May 1 - 1:27 PM

Falcons selected Minnesota OLB De'Vondre Campbell with the No. 115 overall pick in the 2016 draft.

Campbell (6'4/232) spent three seasons with Minnesota after a JUCO transfer, amassing 16 career tackles for loss across 27 starts. Muscle bound and body beautiful, Campbell had an excellent Combine with a 4.58 forty, 34-inch vertical and 9-foot-8 broad jump. While Campbell looks the part, his play recognition and instincts are severely lacking on game tape. He's a talented, high-ceiling special teams/outside linebacker prospect with a lot to learn.
Apr 30 - 1:06 PM

Chiefs selected Minnesota CB Eric Murray with the No. 106 overall pick in the 2016 draft.

Murray (5'11/199) was a 39-game starter in college, wrapping his career with seven tackles for loss and two INTs while earning third-team All-Big Ten as a senior. Although he wasn't a decorated collegiate, Murray hinted at a higher ceiling than his resume suggests by clocking 4.49 with a 39 1/2-inch vertical and 10-foot-4 broad jump in Indy. A technically-sound, high-character prospect with special teams experience, Murray has a chance to become a Bene Benwikere type.
Apr 30 - 12:36 PM

CBS Sports' Pete Prisco notes that Minnesota LB De'Vondre Campbell is "still learning to play the game."

Prisco believes that "[w]ith the right coaching, somebody could get a solid starter late in the draft [in Campbell]." The 6-foot-4, 232-pounder understands that he has yet to reach his ceiling, saying in early March, "I’ve gotten better and better every year. My best football is way ahead of me." He visited the Vikings at the beginning of April.
Source: CBS Sports
Apr 26 - 12:03 AM

Minnesota graduate WR Chris Streveler intends to transfer.

No word as to where Streveler might be eyeing to finish out his collegiate career. The Minnesota coaching staff understands his position and has actually assisted him in sorting through his options. He told the Minneapolis Star Tribune in a text, "The coaches were so supportive afterwards, just helping me get in touch with places and everything. I'm just really thankful that they were so understanding because this is one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make." The 6-foot-2, 209-pounder came to Minnesota as a quarterback, but switched over to receiver for 2015. He would go on to catch one pass for four yards.
Apr 16 - 5:16 PM

Minnesota CB Eric Murray visited the 49ers this weekend.

NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport passed along word of Murray's weekend adventure. He has not had a huge presence in rumors during the pre-draft process, but shrugged off any talk of draft nerves during his Pro Day, saying, "I'm just trying to stay grounded, stay humble and just keep working." The 5-foot-11, 197-pounder did not go through testing proper during the aforementioned Pro Day, only positional drills. He opted to sit on his Combine numbers. NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt wrote that Murray "displayed above-average skills" during his position work. On the testing side of things in Indianapolis, he ran the 40-yard dash in 4.49 seconds with a strong 4.05-second run in the 20-yard shuttle. His 39 1/2-inch vertical jump also impressed. Murray could potentially find himself a draft home as early as Day 2.
Source: NFL.com
Apr 10 - 8:01 PM

Minnesota sophomore QB Demry Croft is taking first-team reps while redshirt senior QB Mitch Leidner recovers from foot surgery.

HC Tracy Claeys had been hoping that Leidner would be recovered enough from offseason foot surgery that he might be able to participate in spring practice. The incumbent starter has been limited, though, leaving it up to Croft to man the White team in this weekend's spring game. OC Jay Johnson indicated that he hopes to see a level of command from the 6-foot-5, 200-pound sophomore in his current expanded role. Said Johnson, "It’s the huddle, it’s the understanding the play clock, it’s awareness, it’s down and distance, it’s all that. I think he’s very young." Assuming Leidner can return to health, he remains the likely Gopher starter for the 2016 campaign.
Apr 8 - 10:46 PM

Minnesota LB De'Vondre Campbell will visit the Vikings on April 5 and 6, according to beat writer Darren Wolfson.

Campbell likely qualifies as a local prospect visit. Campbell tested like an average NFL athlete, but stands 6-foot-4 and 232-pounds and is the type of prospect we'd love to see learn from mike Zimmer and company.
Mar 24 - 10:34 AM


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