5 Things We Learned, 1 Thing To Improve, 7 Players That Made A Difference
What We Learned
- Rashod Bateman is a real playmaker. Not only did Bateman lead the team in all receiving categories, he made an unbelievable one-handed grab on a 42-yard Touchdown.
- While South Dakota State is a good FCS team, it was disappointing to see the Gophers run game struggle to get anything going. Minnesota averaged only 3.1 yards a carry on 42 carries.
- The defense struggled to create pressure and only recorded one sack and 2 tackles for loss. The front line was a question coming in and still remains a major reason for concern.
- Tanner Morgan looked good and did nothing to lose the QB1 role to Zack Annexstad. Hopefully in the coming weeks we will see some more down the field shots to the strength of the team which is the Wide Receivers.
- The secondary is solid in both the passing and rushing game. Chris Williamson had a huge pick six that proved very important and the leading tackler for the team was Defensive Back Jordan Howden .
Biggest Need Of Improvement
The running game really needs to better. A paltry 3.1 yards a carry is not going to get it done, especially once conference play starts. They have the backs with Rodney Smith and Mohamed Ibrahim that should be able to lead this team and be way more explosive. Next up they have Fresno State and Minnesota will have to run the ball better to get to 2-0 on the season.
- Rashod Bateman had a huge game with 5 catches, 132 yards, and the one-handed Touchdown grab. He was by far the most explosive player for the Gophers.
- Chris Williamson had arguably the biggest play of the game with the pick six and contributed 2 tackles. Without the pick six the outcome of this game could of been a lot different.
- Jordan Howden led the team with 12 tackles and added 2 pass deflections. Howden was all over the field and seemed to be involved in every play.
- Rodney Smith accumulated 92 yards and provided a stable go to option even though you would like to see a little more explosiveness.
- Tanner Morgan was very efficient going 13/18 and only had the one mistake with an INT. Morgan did all that was asked from him and finished with a solid game.
- Winston DeLattiboudere had a big fumble recovery in this game and also added 3 tackles. DeLattiboudere’s fumble recovery led to the go ahead Touchdown late in the 4th quarter.
- Mohamed Ibrahim added a rushing Touchdown and added 36 yards on the ground. While below his standards the Gophers escaped with a victory and will take is contributions.