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Minnesota HC Jerry Kill called senior S Damarius Travis the most underrated player in the Big Ten.

Not only did Kill call Travis the most underrated player in the conference, he also strongly voiced the opinion that the 6-foot-2, 208-pound senior will be drafted by an NFL team in 2016. Travis started 7 of the Gophers' 13 games last season, recording 61 tackles (3.5 for loss), two interceptions, a forced fumble and five passes broken up.
Sep 1 - 8:56 PM

Minnesota HC Jerry Kill indicated that senior RB Rodrick Williams will be the team's starter for Thursday's season-opening showdown with TCU.

During a Tuesday radio interview, Kill said that there was "no doubt" that Williams would be the starting tailback for Thursday's game. As a junior last season, the 5-foot-11, 234-pound runner played in 13 games and carried the ball 23 times for 114 yards and a touchdown. With Williams and talented freshman Shannon Brooks in the backfield, the Gophers are hoping that the loss of David Cobb can at least be somewhat mitigated.
Sep 1 - 7:46 PM

In a radio interview, Minnesota HC Jerry Kill said that he thought that true freshman RB Shannon Brooks has the potential to be an All-Big Ten running back.

To be clear, Kill didn't say Brooks would hit that level this season. Just down the road, maybe. This August, he's called the 6-foot, 205-pound true freshman a "very gifted kid" and a "great talent." The Gopher head coach did caution that while the potential is there, Brooks still needs to improve some aspects of his game, notably in blocking, as the team looks to fill the hole left by current Tennessee Titan David Cobb.
Sep 1 - 6:03 PM

Minnesota HC Jerry Kill said in a radio interview that senior WR K.J. Maye has had the best camp of any Gopher.

HC Kill has loved Maye's effort in camp and quarterback Mitch Leidner has been equally impressed. Said the gunslinger, "If you ever go watch KJ on film, he’s easily the guy who’s working harder than every single guy on the field." The 5-foot-10, 194-pound senior played in 13 games last season, including five starts. He hauled in 16 passes for 298 yards and a touchdown, while rushing 23 times for 144 yards and a score.
Sep 1 - 5:20 PM

According to Minnesota HC Jerry Kill, redshirt junior QB Mitch Leidner has been "the best [Kill's] seen him look since [Kill's] been [t]here."

Said Kill, "The first three or four days of camp, [Leidner] wasn't as sharp as he wanted to be, but I can tell you the last two weeks he has been unbelievably sharp," adding that the 6-foot-4, 237-pound redshirt junior "has done a really, really good job." In 12 starts last season, Leidner completed 122-of-237 passes for 1,798 yards and 11 touchdowns while rushing 126 times for 452 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Aug 29 - 8:03 PM

According to Minnesota HC Jerry Kill, the team will not be using a no-huddle offense this season.

"We experimented with [a no-huddle offense] a little," said Kill, before going on to completely shoot down the idea with "we've been a huddle team, that's who we are." The off-shoot of the Gophers tinkering with the uptempo pace in the spring is that the defense might be a little quicker to react to TCU's own blistering pace in Thursday's opener.
Aug 29 - 7:12 PM

Minnesota sophomore WR Jeff Jones missed Wednesday's practice with an unspecified injury.

This could be related to Jones' history of migraines, but there's no specific word as of yet. Out of high school, he was ranked as the No. 7 RB in the 2014 recruiting class by Rivals.com. He began a conversion from running back over to wide receiver in the spring. The 6-foot, 196-pound duel-threat has looked out of sync at times this August after putting in a strong spring, but head coach Jerry Krill tried to downplay this, noting that the sophomore "took a ton of snaps [in the scrimmage] Saturday. You’ve got to understand, he has not played football in a while." On the "not playing football" comment, Krill is alluding to the fact that Jones was academically ineligible last season.
Aug 20 - 3:31 PM

Minnesota HC Jerry Krill indicated that true freshman RB Shannon Brooks would need to continue to work on protection in the passing game.

Brooks rushed for 91 yards on 16 carries in Saturday's scrimmage. Krill was complimentary of his new 6-foot, 205-pound back, but acknowledged there were still aspects of his game he needed to work on if he wanted to see extended playing time. "There's more to it than just running the ball," said the head coach, adding that Brooks is a "great talent" and a "very gifted kid." Brooks, Rodney Smith, Rodrick Williams and Berkley Edwards are all running backs in the Gopher stable as the team tries to replace the immaculate work of recently drafted Tennessee Titan David Cobb. ESPN and Rivals both rated Brooks as a three-star recruit out of high school.
Aug 20 - 3:10 PM

NFL Media analyst Chad Reuter wrote that Minnesota redshirt senior OLB De'Vondre Campbell is "just scratching the surface of his potential."

Reuter noted that Campbell "moves better than expected in the open field" for somebody who clocks in at 6-foot-5, 238 pounds, then went on to emphasize that the senior deserves to be drafted based on his duel abilities to create havoc in the backfield and hunt down runners who reach the second level. Last season, he made 75 tackles (6.5 for loss), recorded 2.5 sacks and recovered three fumbles while picking off one pass. TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline has Campbell graded as a potential fourth-round selection.
Source: NFL.com
Aug 18 - 8:12 PM

Minnesota redshirt senior edge rusher Theiren Cockran "has the get-off to pressure the edge and the long strides to chase plays from behind, potentially setting up a move to the rush linebacker position," notes NFL Media draft analyst Chad Reuter.

"This tall, lean defensive end has been a thorn in the side of Big Ten offensive lines the past two seasons," Reuter wrote. Indeed, the 6-foot-6, 257-pound Cockran has collected 17 tackles for loss and 11.5 sacks since 2013. "If scouts think he's strong enough to handle containment responsibilities against NFL tackles, he'll rise up this list," Reuter wrote.
Source: NFL.com
Aug 9 - 12:51 PM

TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline reports that NFL scouts grade Minnesota CB Briean Boddy-Calhoun above teammate CB Eric Murray, but he has that order flipped.

"Both have next level ball skills but I prefer Murray’s size/speed advantage as well as his ability to make plays with his back to the ball," he wrote. Despite that assertion, Pauline gives both Golden Gopher cover aces identical Rd. 3 grades heading into the year.
Jul 31 - 7:54 PM

Minnesota coach Jerry Kill told reports that he's been seizure-free for over a year and a half.

"I’m doing great," Kill said. Kill, who suffers from epilepsy, had a seizure following a loss to Northwestern in 2012 and missed the second half of a game against Western Illinois in 2013. The ailment forced him to coach from the press box at the end of 2013, but he was on the sideline in 2014 and will be back in 2015.
Jul 31 - 6:52 PM

TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline "think[s] highly" of Minnesota redshirt senior OLB De'Vondre Campbell.

"He’s a scheme diverse three down defender that displays exceptional skill in space," Pauline wrote. The 6-foot-5, 225-pound Campbell has always been rangy and highly athletic, but it's taken him several years to get his game off the ground. He made huge strides last season under the Golden Gophers' technique-sound coaching staff, and another jump in his play will result in a vault up draft boards. As a first-year starter in 2014, Campbell recorded 75 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, three fumble recoveries and one interception. Pauline grades him as a Rd. 4 prospect.
Jul 31 - 5:36 PM

Minnesota redshirt senior CB Briean Boddy-Calhoun is "willing to throw his body into ball carriers to stop them in their tracks, making him an interesting nickel prospect (which is basically a starting position in the NFL nowadays)," notes NFL Media draft analyst Chad Reuter.

"The Gophers have two of the top corners in the country with Eric Murray and Boddy-Calhoun (5-11, 188), a junior college transfer who was an all-conference selection by both league media (first team) and coaches (second team)," Reuter wrote. "He picked off five passes and broke up nine others using an innate ability to close on the ball in 2014." The 5-foot-11, 188-pound Boddy-Calhoun collected 51 tackles, 2 TFL, nine breakups and five interceptions in 10 starts last year.
Source: NFL.com
Jul 29 - 6:56 PM

ESPN's Mel Kiper ranks Minnesota senior CB Eric Murray as the No. 2 senior cornerback prospect in the land.

"A tough player who can press and ride down the field, Murray has played in 39 games and has every start over the last two seasons," he wrote. "Will be a player that QBs stay away from in 2015." The 6-foot, 196-pound Murray recorded 69 tackles, seven pass breakups, one interception, one fumble recovery and two blocked kicks to earn All-Big Ten Second Team honors last year.
Jul 11 - 7:55 PM


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