Souhan: Fleck's overuse of Ibrahim in the past month doesn't represent one red flag — it represents a bouquet of them.

mngolf

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Monday morning coaching going on here. Mo slams it in on carry 16 or 17 and he is heralded as the stud of the century. A fumble made it Flecks fault he carried the ball too many times. The only blame from me on Fleck is that we have no other options to move the ball. Year 6 and we need to bring guys back for 5 and 6 years. Fleck is a poor coach in this regard, no options, no backup plan or development. Next year we move into a completely new crew on offense, we will hear "rebuild". We should be reloading.
No one but you has said rebuild. I doubt Fleck will say that. And who says we don't have other options, he just chose to go with the guy that is setting records.
 

Go Gophs

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And Mo will be a serviceable back-up running back in the NFL. Hope he plays as long as he can, but he's not going to have a long career. He is not NFL fast.
He doesn't, but he has NFL vision and toughness. Lots of great cutbacks and I can't remember a time he didn't get an extra yard after contact. My guess is he is either drafted in the last round or a camp invite free agent. Mattison is as good as gone after this year, I wouldn't mind the Vikes using a 7th on him and having him spell Cook for a few seasons.
 

Gold Rush

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Monday morning coaching going on here. Mo slams it in on carry 16 or 17 and he is heralded as the stud of the century. A fumble made it Flecks fault he carried the ball too many times. The only blame from me on Fleck is that we have no other options to move the ball. Year 6 and we need to bring guys back for 5 and 6 years. Fleck is a poor coach in this regard, no options, no backup plan or development. Next year we move into a completely new crew on offense, we will hear "rebuild". We should be reloading.
The scary thing is offensively, the only player that is trustworthy is Ibrahim and he will be gone. Potts and Williams are unproven and can usually get you 2-3 yards..QB is not proven and WR's are pretty iffy too. Hoping maybe one of the two new RB's could step up and Autman-Bell returns..This is not a Big Ten offense without Ibrahim next year ---- it's Iowa Part 2.
 

MNVCGUY

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nice sarcasm.....as nice as it is to keep rolling with him, you have got to give him a breather. I don't blame that fumble on an exhausted RB - I blame it on a coach that didn't give him a break and wore him down too far.
Or you know, he got hit from the side, helmet right on the ball while also getting hit from the front. Could being tired have played a role, maybe, but it also could just be a case where the hit was in such a way that it knocked the ball loose from a RB who has made hundreds of carries while tired and not fumbled.

It is easy to be critical of the decision after the fact but at the time I had zero issues with continuing to let Mo dominate their defense and drive the team down the field for the winning score.
 

Tommyboy

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The tackle that transferred from ND was 25 out of 25 on the depth chart at ND. Trey Lance was not offered and is now in the Pros. Singer was not recruited and now is 20th in the nation as a WR as a sophomore. Fleck's coaching methods have allowed him to rise to a top coaching job. Does he have a knack for identifying talent? Is he a master mind of X's and O's? Or is he a master promoter? He definingly told Minnesota what they wanted to hear, I can fix your problem. He most likely will move on in a few years and be one that offers strong but delusive enticement to the next Minnesota.
 


MNVCGUY

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The scary thing is offensively, the only player that is trustworthy is Ibrahim and he will be gone. Potts and Williams are unproven and can usually get you 2-3 yards..QB is not proven and WR's are pretty iffy too. Hoping maybe one of the two new RB's could step up and Autman-Bell returns..This is not a Big Ten offense without Ibrahim next year ---- it's Iowa Part 2.
Way too early to panic about next year's offense. AK will have the experience from this year plus an entire off season to continue to develop. CRAB will provide a #1 receiver allowing Jackson to work as a #2 and there are some others that could take a step forward as well. Evans will be in the RB mix next year and the two freshman coming in have put up huge numbers in high school. Plus you never know what we could bring in from the portal. The offense is going to look different without Mo but that may help lead to the balance that has been such a point of concern for many posters this year.

I get that doom and gloom is the flavor of the board right now but can we at least focus the negativity on 2022 and save the 2023 negativity until you know....2023.... :)
 

MNVCGUY

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The tackle that transferred from ND was 25 out of 25 on the depth chart at ND. Trey Lance was not offered and is now in the Pros. Singer was not recruited and now is 20th in the nation as a WR as a sophomore. Fleck's coaching methods have allowed him to rise to a top coaching job. Does he have a knack for identifying talent? Is he a master mind of X's and O's? Or is he a master promoter? He definingly told Minnesota what they wanted to hear, I can fix your problem. He most likely will move on in a few years and be one that offers strong but delusive enticement to the next Minnesota.
you are really grasping at straws now. Faulting him for not recruiting a lightly recruited kid who left Minnesota to play his final year in the state of Arizona before committing to Arizona for college. Trey Lance wanted to be a QB, nobody in Power 5 believed he would be a good one. He had one phenomenal year at NDSU and so far has had one year of minimal play and then a season ending injury in the NFL.
 

Tommyboy

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you are really grasping at straws now. Faulting him for not recruiting a lightly recruited kid who left Minnesota to play his final year in the state of Arizona before committing to Arizona for college. Trey Lance wanted to be a QB, nobody in Power 5 believed he would be a good one. He had one phenomenal year at NDSU and so far has had one year of minimal play and then a season ending injury in the NFL.
These are just facts, would these guys on our front door step helped us out?
 

MaxyJR1

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The scary thing is offensively, the only player that is trustworthy is Ibrahim and he will be gone. Potts and Williams are unproven and can usually get you 2-3 yards..QB is not proven and WR's are pretty iffy too. Hoping maybe one of the two new RB's could step up and Autman-Bell returns..This is not a Big Ten offense without Ibrahim next year ---- it's Iowa Part 2.
Looked back at last year when Mo was hurt

W: Miami of Ohio Potts 34 carries 178
W: Colorado Potts 26 for 121
L: Bowling Green Potts 27 for 141
W: Purdue 15 for 78 and got hurt
W: Nebraska B Williams 17 for 127 and got hurt
W: Maryland Ky Thomas 21 for 139
W: Northwestern Irving 19 for 110 Ky 21 for 106
L: Illinois Ky Thomas 16 for 60
L: Iowa Ky Thomas 29 for 126
W: Indiana Ky Thomas 26 for 105
W: WI Ky Thomas 18 for 55

W: West Virginia Ky 21 for 144 and Irving 19 for 129.


We really still rode one back in each game. Fleck seems to really get one guy going and still with them.
 



MNVCGUY

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These are just facts, would these guys on our front door step helped us out?
Singer wasn't on our doorstep and NOBODY saw Lance being the player he turned out to be....NOBODY.....he had to go to NDSU to get a chance to play QB.

It is super lazy to fault coaches for missing out on guys who were not can't miss prospects that developed into great players. But I am not surprised it is a tactic you are using.
 

LakevilleBro

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Did anyone notice that a few plays before MO's fumble, he raised his hand, after a 1st down run and he wanted to come out. They did not take him out. I love MO, but I wonder what was happening at that time. He took a lot of hard hits that game.
 

Ope3

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Did anyone notice that a few plays before MO's fumble, he raised his hand, after a 1st down run and he wanted to come out. They did not take him out. I love MO, but I wonder what was happening at that time. He took a lot of hard hits that game.
Was that the play his face mask was dislodged so they had to take a Time Out to fix it?
 

Ogee Oglethorpe

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Stupid. I can almost guarantee you that Mo wants the carries. He has one chance to be among the elite of college running backs, and this is it...and he is.

We've seen Mo ask to come out for a spell consistently, in every game. He most definitely tells the sideline when he needs a breather. At this stage of his career, and knowing what kind of player he is and what he's been through, I'm more than willing to accept that he knows full well when he needs a breather.

Souhan is a clueless moron working for a terrible paper. Baseball's over, the paper probably told him he had to write about something so he decided to go with this; wouldn't surprise me if he hasn't watched more than a half dozen halves of Gopher football this season combined.
 




BilldGopher

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At least for Mo this will be a non-issue after two more games. Future players we'll just have to see...
 

Gophers_4life

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Did anyone notice that a few plays before MO's fumble, he raised his hand, after a 1st down run and he wanted to come out. They did not take him out. I love MO, but I wonder what was happening at that time. He took a lot of hard hits that game.
Wild guess as I didn't see it, not refuting you at all because I don't know:

usually to signal wanting to come out don't the players tap their helmet with their hand? So maybe it was a signal that he was good to stay in?
 

Replacement Gopher

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If the fumble doesn't happen, we punch the ball in and win the game this "article" never gets written.
What makes you think Iowa doesn’t go down and score? They moved the ball fairly easily on their last possession.
 

Some guy

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Did anyone notice that a few plays before MO's fumble, he raised his hand, after a 1st down run and he wanted to come out. They did not take him out. I love MO, but I wonder what was happening at that time. He took a lot of hard hits that game.
lol
 

Indiana Gopher

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per Souhan:

The Gophers' P.J. Fleck has, like O'Connell, cultivated a reputation as a player-friendly coach. Saturday, he allowed his star senior running back, Mo Ibrahim, to carry the ball 39 times against a physical defense.

Ibrahim's carries in the last five games: 30, 36, 32, 36 and 39 — all in less than a month's time. Before this five-game stretch, Ibrahim had played in 33 games for the Gophers, and had totaled five games of 30 carries or more, and in only one game had he carried more than 33 times.

Ibrahim missed most of the 2021 season after suffering a ruptured Achilles tendon in the opener against Ohio State. He is a great college football player with a future in the NFL. Fleck is putting him at risk for injury, and could be damaging his ability to make a living carrying a football.

Unlike Darrisaw, Ibrahim does not have an agent (officially), a union or a life-changing income. He is at the mercy of one coach's decisions.

Fleck's overuse of Ibrahim in the past month doesn't represent one red flag — it represents a bouquet of them.

Fleck needed Ibrahim's greatness in an important game against Iowa, so Ibrahim carried the ball 39 times. That's too many carries for a college back with a physical running style, but if that game represented one impassioned attempt to steal a victory, perhaps it could be excused.

But Ibrahim carried 30 times in a 45-17 loss to Penn State, 36 times in a 31-0 victory over Rutgers and 36 times in a 31-3 victory over Northwestern. There was no reason for Ibrahim to be overworked in those games — particularly in blowout victories over terrible Rutgers and Northwestern teams.

Those rushing totals are an indictment of both Fleck's recruiting and offensive philosophy, as well as evidence of his willingness to put a player at risk.

This is Fleck's sixth year with the Gophers. Unlike in the outlier season of 2019, all of the players on the roster are his recruits. He was an NFL receiver who recruited Rashod Bateman, yet his receiving corps this season is so thin that an injury to Chris Autman-Bell destroyed his passing offense. His backfield is so thin that Ibrahim carries the ball even when games are out of hand.

Next year, Fleck will be without two of his security blankets — Tanner Morgan's leadership and Ibrahim's brilliance. Fleck is 25-26 in the Big Ten, including 13-11 since the 2019 season that was supposed to transform the program.

With a remarkably easy schedule and a team filled with sixth-year and other seniors, this was supposed to be the Gophers' year. They are 4-4 in the Big Ten.

Fleck is making 2019 look like an aberration aided by the previous regime's players.

Saturday, the Gophers play at Wisconsin. Ibrahim should be limited to 25 or so carries. If the Gophers can't win without overusing their star back, blame Fleck's recruiting.


Go Gophers!!
Agree with almost everything you just said....and have been thinking it for a long time!
 

Some guy

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Monday morning coaching going on here. Mo slams it in on carry 16 or 17 and he is heralded as the stud of the century. A fumble made it Flecks fault he carried the ball too many times. The only blame from me on Fleck is that we have no other options to move the ball. Year 6 and we need to bring guys back for 5 and 6 years. Fleck is a poor coach in this regard, no options, no backup plan or development. Next year we move into a completely new crew on offense, we will hear "rebuild". We should be reloading.
Honestly if you write this article about Mo getting 36 Carries when super effective it’s a very transparent clickbait.

Considering every linemen on the field takes as big of a collision like 65-90 snaps per game.

If you don’t think a guy can get 36 Carries, you can’t watch football. Because even at 36 Carries he isn’t top 10 on the field (of the 22) and isn’t top 20 (of the 44) in terms of physical toll
 

Indiana Gopher

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Way too early to panic about next year's offense. AK will have the experience from this year plus an entire off season to continue to develop. CRAB will provide a #1 receiver allowing Jackson to work as a #2 and there are some others that could take a step forward as well. Evans will be in the RB mix next year and the two freshman coming in have put up huge numbers in high school. Plus you never know what we could bring in from the portal. The offense is going to look different without Mo but that may help lead to the balance that has been such a point of concern for many posters this year.

I get that doom and gloom is the flavor of the board right now but can we at least focus the negativity on 2022 and save the 2023 negativity until you know....2023.... :)
I love your optimism....and I am hoping to catch it! I just have more doubts. I love Athan and would like to believe that QB play will improve next year (but the last few games, with Athan, have been hard to watch). Love Evans, and wish he had played more this year, but not sure he can replace Mo. IF Autman-Bell comes back, we upgrade the WR corps (but will he actually come back....and at full-strength...and do we have a legitimate #2 WR?). Last and this year's OL had lots of experience...what will next year's look like? IDK. Who comes back? Ersery? Ruschmeyer? Anyone else? I believe Filiaga and Schmitz are gone. What about Carroll? Anyone else that may make an impact? Defense, which has been great this year, loses some guys that have been contributors. Throw in a tough schedule and IDK....I still say ROW THE BOAT, GO GOPHERS, and SKI U MAH!
 

MNVCGUY

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I love your optimism....and I am hoping to catch it! I just have more doubts. I love Athan and would like to believe that QB play will improve next year (but the last few games, with Athan, have been hard to watch). Love Evans, and wish he had played more this year, but not sure he can replace Mo. IF Autman-Bell comes back, we upgrade the WR corps (but will he actually come back....and at full-strength...and do we have a legitimate #2 WR?). Last and this year's OL had lots of experience...what will next year's look like? IDK. Who comes back? Ersery? Ruschmeyer? Anyone else? I believe Filiaga and Schmitz are gone. What about Carroll? Anyone else that may make an impact? Defense, which has been great this year, loses some guys that have been contributors. Throw in a tough schedule and IDK....I still say ROW THE BOAT, GO GOPHERS, and SKI U MAH!
The whole roster construction heading into next year will be interesting. With the portal and all that I just don't think anyone can say right now what our roster or the rosters of our opponents are going to look like in 2023.

In regards to CRAB, he has said he is coming back and Fleck has indicated he doesn't think there will be any issues getting the 7th year for him. Jackson can 100% be a #2 but there should be other options in the mix as well.

Next year's schedule looks difficult on paper right now but until we see how everyone really looks (us included) it is pretty pointless to spend too much time thinking about it.
 

wimpygopher

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I like PJ a lot. But he does sometimes overuse players unnecessarily. I recall he kept an injured Zach Annexstad in a game too long until his injury got a lot worse
 

gopherbadgerman

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Mor
Recruiting quality skill players to Minnesota has always been a challenge. I would actually contend that Fleck has done better than most of his predecessors considering he recruited perhaps the greatest RB ever to play at the U in Ibrahim, one of the top receivers in program history in Bateman and one of the top QBs in program history in Morgan. Not to mention the fact that Fleck and his staff played a massive role in developing TJ into a great receiver.
Morgan was great one year. Outside of that average.
 

MNVCGUY

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Mor

Morgan was great one year. Outside of that average.
People will go back and forth about how good Morgan was or was not but the fact remains he is the all-time winningest QB at MN and one of the better QBs to ever play here.
 

btowngopher

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Mo fumbled because he tried to make a play and got sloppy with ball security. It wasn’t because he was tired.
 

btowngopher

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The tackle that transferred from ND was 25 out of 25 on the depth chart at ND. Trey Lance was not offered and is now in the Pros. Singer was not recruited and now is 20th in the nation as a WR as a sophomore. Fleck's coaching methods have allowed him to rise to a top coaching job. Does he have a knack for identifying talent? Is he a master mind of X's and O's? Or is he a master promoter? He definingly told Minnesota what they wanted to hear, I can fix your problem. He most likely will move on in a few years and be one that offers strong but delusive enticement to the next Minnesota.
Well aren’t you going to give Fleck credit for not offering your boy who couldn’t hack it at St. Thomas? I mean you were ripping Fleck for not offering him along with every other Minnesota kid.
 

Gold Rush

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Way too early to panic about next year's offense. AK will have the experience from this year plus an entire off season to continue to develop. CRAB will provide a #1 receiver allowing Jackson to work as a #2 and there are some others that could take a step forward as well. Evans will be in the RB mix next year and the two freshman coming in have put up huge numbers in high school. Plus you never know what we could bring in from the portal. The offense is going to look different without Mo but that may help lead to the balance that has been such a point of concern for many posters this year.

I get that doom and gloom is the flavor of the board right now but can we at least focus the negativity on 2022 and save the 2023 negativity until you know....2023.... :)
OK, I will give you the fact one or both of the freshmen RB's may step up (in fact I said this in my post) or Autman Bell could return and do well, or Fleck scores in the off season with some new help -- all this could happen. My point is right now -- things look very bleak offensively and I am appalled at the lack of offensive weapons we have going forward. Fleck is in big trouble unless he can find some new options, especially at RB.
 

MNVCGUY

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OK, I will give you the fact one or both of the freshmen RB's may step up (in fact I said this in my post) or Autman Bell could return and do well, or Fleck scores in the off season with some new help -- all this could happen. My point is right now -- things look very bleak offensively and I am appalled at the lack of offensive weapons we have going forward. Fleck is in big trouble unless he can find some new options, especially at RB.
There will be a lot of unknowns on offense heading into next season but I'm not ready to abandon hope.

AK will be entering his third year in the program and while he hasn't set the world on fire this year he is still very young and the experience he is getting now is only going to help him heading into 2023 when he will be the guy. He brings a whole new dimension to this offense with his ability to run as well as a stronger arm which should open up more deep shots. There is obvious talent there, he just has to tap into it.

WR position gets a massive boost with CRAB back. Jackson has shown some flashes and there are others in the mix who could still develop. Or maybe they go the transfer route and bring in a WR.

Potts looked really good last year before he got hurt. Hasn't looked the same this year, maybe he gets it back over the off season heading into 2023. Evans has only seen minimal action but looked good when he was in there. It won't the same without Mo but I feel confident the coaches will figure out a way to still be productive with the running game.

Without Mo back there to lean on the offense is going to have to evolve next season. Will be interesting to see how it shakes out.
 

cjbfbp

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Looked back at last year when Mo was hurt

W: Miami of Ohio Potts 34 carries 178
W: Colorado Potts 26 for 121
L: Bowling Green Potts 27 for 141
W: Purdue 15 for 78 and got hurt
W: Nebraska B Williams 17 for 127 and got hurt
W: Maryland Ky Thomas 21 for 139
W: Northwestern Irving 19 for 110 Ky 21 for 106
L: Illinois Ky Thomas 16 for 60
L: Iowa Ky Thomas 29 for 126
W: Indiana Ky Thomas 26 for 105
W: WI Ky Thomas 18 for 55

W: West Virginia Ky 21 for 144 and Irving 19 for 129.


We really still rode one back in each game. Fleck seems to really get one guy going and still with them.

A single RB had more than 30 carries in only one of those games. Mo has had 30 or more carries in 5 consecutive games and fell only one short of 40 in the last game. He probably would have had more than 30 against PSU if the team had not fallen so far behind.

It looks like Illinois works Chase Brown about as much. Michigan doesn't work Corum quite as much and Wisconsin doesn't come close with Braelon Allen. I agree with the poster who said that not having another RB he can trust to help with the load is a bit of a recruiting/developmental failure on Fleck's part.
 




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