Gophers welcome back seven defensive linemen who saw action in at least nine games from last season
2015 • JUNIOR SEASON: Tallied a pair of tackles against TCU • registered a pass breakup at Colorado State • made a tackle and added a pass breakup against Ohio • started at Northwestern, but did not record a statistic • tallied one tackle, inluding .5 sack at Purdue • registered a tackle versus Nebraska • started but did not record a statistic versus Michigan • tallied three tackles, one sack and recovered a fumble at Ohio State • registered two tackles, including a sack for five yards, at Iowa • started and made a tackle along the defensive line versus Illinois.
2014 • SOPHOMORE SEASON: Played in 13 games, starting one • made 14 tackles, including 3.0 for a loss (1.5 sacks). Game-by-Game: Made five tackles, including one tackle-for-loss, against Eastern Illinois • totaled two tackles, including one sack, against Middle Tennessee • played at TCU • talled three tackles, one tackle-for-loss and .5 sack against San Jose State • played at Michigan, against Northwestern and against Purdue, but did not record any statistics • tallied two tackles at Illinois • assisted on one tackle against Iowa • saw action against Ohio State, at Nebraska and at Wisconsin • made one tackle against Missouri.
2013 • FRESHMAN SEASON: Played in 10 games • made 10 tackles, including one tackle-for-loss • named Outstanding Defensive Freshman of the Year. Game-by-Game: Made his Minnesota and collegiate debut against UNLV and recorded two tackles • registered two solo tackles at New Mexico State • played against Western Illinois, but did not record any statistics • made one tackle against San Jose State • made one tackle against Iowa and at Northwestern • competed against Nebraska • played against Penn State and Wisconsin, but did not record any statistics • made three solo tackles, including one tackle-for-loss against Syracuse.
HIGH SCHOOL: Attended Lewisville High School • was a three-year letterwinner • earned first-team All-District 8-5A in 2012 after being named honorable mention in 2010 • tallied 24 tackles, 2.5 sacks and recorded one fumble recovery as a senior in 2012 • made 26 tackles, 3.5 sacks and forced two fumbles as a junior • coached by Greg Miller • enrolled at the University of Minnesota in January 2013 and participated in spring practice • Scout.com listed him as a two-star recruit and as the No. 123 player at his position • Rivals.com named him a three-star prospect.
PERSONAL: Born June 30, 1995 • son of Joel and Edith Ekpe • older brother, Scott, is a defensive lineman for the Gophers.
Ten Gophers Awarded by Big Ten Conference
Ten student-athletes from the Minnesota football program on defense and special teams were recognized by the Big Ten.
O'Brien Joins Coaching Staff
Tracy Claeys announced today the hiring of Dan O'Brien to fill an open coaching position on the defensive side of the ball.
Gophers Hold Annual Awards Banquet
The University of Minnesota football team and the Goal Line Club celebrated the 2015 regular season at the annual Golden Gopher Football Banquet on Sunday afternoon at the Hilton...