For the first time in 16 years, the Gophers have won the first six games of the season with a 34-7 win over Nebraska. Dating back to last year, the Gophers have now won eight straight games, the longest streak since 1948-1949. In victory No. 6, the Gophers used the running game once again, rushing for 322 yards against Nebraska en route to becoming bowl eligible in 2019. Here are some key stats from the win!
220: In the first half alone, the Gophers had 220 rushing yards on 23 attempts. The 9.5 yards per carry by Shannon Brooks, Rodney Smith, and Mohamed Ibrahim helped open the passing game, including a first-half touchdown connection between Tanner Morgan and Chris Autman-Bell.
13: First downs by the Gophers in the first 30 minutes of play. The Gophers kept drives alive going three-for-five on third-down conversions in the first half. The conversions kept the Nebraska offense off the field and allowed the defense to catch their breath. The Gophers had the ball for 15:26 in the first half and were 8-for-13 on third-down conversions in total.
0: If you take away the field goal that Head Coach P.J. Fleck blames on himself, the Gophers defense allowed zero points in seven quarters dating back to the Illinois win. Both Illinois touchdowns were scored on defense while the field goal was allowed by Fleck deciding to “ice” the kicker, something he says he almost never does. Carter Coughlin and the entire defensive personnel have played fantastic over the last couple of weeks. The Gophers went 111 minutes and 27 seconds without allowing an offensive touchdown between the fourth quarter vs. Purdue and tonight’s game.
2000: In the first half, Shannon Brooks eclipsed 2,000 rushing yards on his career. Brooks is the 16th Minnesota player in school history to total 2,000 or more rushing yards in a career.
25: In the third quarter, Rodney Smith ran in the 25th rushing touchdown of his career. The direct snap one-yard touchdown tied him for sixth all-time in school history for rushing touchdowns.
11: Tyler Johnson now has 11 games in which he has 100 or more receiving yards. That ties him with Eric Decker and Tutu Atwell for the most in school history.
15: Kamal Martin ended the game with 15 tackles (6 solo), in the victory. Antoine Winfield Jr. was second on the team with 10 tackles (7 solo) including a sack. Four sacks and one forced fumble for the defensive unit as a whole.
7.3: While the Cornhuskers ran 72 plays as compared to Minnesota’s 62, the Gophers averaged 7.3 yards per play and held Nebraska to just 4.2 yards per play. That difference was the key to the game, allowing Minnesota to stick to the run game which averaged 6.6 yards per carry in the win. The Gophers defense allowed just 3.5 yards per rush to Noah Vedral and the Cornhuskers run attack.
8: Completions for Gophers quarterback Tanner Morgan who went 8-for-13 for 128 yards and one touchdown. Morgan is now 10-2 as a starter for Minnesota as he continues to limit mistakes and bouncing back from the mistakes that he does make.
9: The Gophers go for win No. 9 in a row next week when the team travels to play Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights are currently 1-5 on the season after a 35-0 loss to Indiana on Oct. 12. Minnesota returns home on Oct. 26 for a game vs. Maryland. Next week’s game begins at 2:30 p.m.