Hendrick Ekpe, Mitch Leidner and Jonah Pirsig have accepted invitations to play in January showcase games
Minnesota held its annual awards banquet on Sunday afternoon
Stable of backs, healthy Leidner powers Minnesota running game
Duo connected eight times for 125 yards and two touchdowns
Leidner sets quarterback rushing touchdown mark, Smith posts career high in yards
Minnesota beat Iowa, 51-14, to bring Floyd of Rosedale home.
The Golden Gophers rallied from an 11-point deficit to beat Purdue.
Minnesota beat Northwestern 24-17 to improve to 5-1 and 2-0 in the Big Ten.
The latest episode of Brick by Brick takes you behind the scenes in Michigan.
Minnesota defeated Michigan, 30-14, to claim the Little Brown Jug.
Photos from Iowa @ Minnesota on October 8, 2016.
Football vs Iowa 11.08.14
Football vs Northwestern 10.11.14
Football vs Eastern Illinois 08.28.14
Football in the Spring
CAREER: Played in 47 career games (29-18 record) and started 41 (24-17 record as a starter) • rushed 446 times (15th all-time in school history) for 1,495 yards (third in school history for a quarterback) and 33 career touchdowns (most in school history for a quarterback, fourth for any player) • passed for 7,287 yards (third most in school history) and 36 touchdowns (fifth in school history) • ranks fifth all-time in school history in completion percentage (56.4), second in completions (580) and second in attempts (1,029) • only Minnesota quarterback ever to pass and rush for 30 career touchdowns • ranks second all-time in total offense with 8,882 yards. 2016: Tied his career high with four touchdown passes against Indiana State. 2015: Set career highs in completions (27) at Ohio State, attempts at Colorado State (45) and passing yards (317) against Michigan • set a program record for a junior in completions (242) and passing yards (2,701) • passed for 301 yards against Nebraska and 317 yards against Michigan in consecutive weeks to become the first Gopher since 1995 to throw for 300 or more yards in back-to-back games (Cory Sauter 303 vs Northwestern and 404 vs Michigan State) • passed for 301 yards against Nebraska, 317 yards against Michigan and 281 yards at Ohio State and 259 yards at Iowa to tie Mike Hohensee's 1982 school record of passing for at least 250 yards in four straight games • passed for 250 yards or more in five games (Ohio, Nebraska, Michigan, Ohio State and Iowa) to become the first Gopher quarterback to have five 250-yard games in a season since Adam Weber had five in 2007. 2014: Passed for four touchdowns in a 51-14 home win against Iowa • posted his second career 100-yard rushing game at Nebraska when he rushed for 111 yards and led Minnesota to a 28-24 road win. 2013: Rushed for 151 yards and tied a school record for quarterbacks when he rushed for four touchdowns in one game against San Jose State as a redshirt freshman.
2016 • SENIOR SEASON: Started 12 games • missed the Maryland game with an injury • rushed 111 times for 366 yards and 10 touchdowns (tied his own school record from 2014 and Billy Cockerham in 1999 for rushing scores by a quarterback) • completed 173-of-307 passes for 2,169 yards and eight touchdowns • Academic All-Big Ten. Game-by-Game: Completed 13-of-26 passes for 130 yards against Oregon State and rushed 13 times for 76 yards and two scores • completed 20-of-30 passes for 295 yards against Indiana State and tied his career high with four touchdowns • completed 16-of-20 passes (80%) for 174 yards against Colorado State and also rushed 10 times for 50 yards and a score • rushing score was the 26th of his career, extending his record for Minnesota quarterbacks • completed 24-of-40 passes for 241 yards at Penn State and completed 13 passes for 166 yards against Iowa • missed the Maryland game with an injury • returned to action against Rutgers where he started the 35th game of his career (has played in 41) and competed 11 passes for 156 yards • rushed seven times against Rutgers for 39 yards and one touchdown • threw for 112 yards and rushed for one touchdown at Illinois • completed 14-of-23 passes against Purdue for 231 yards and also rushed for 74 yards and two touchdowns • rushed for a touchdown and completed 18-of-27 passes for 180 yards at Nebraska • threw for 197 yards and one touchdown and also rushed for 28 yards and one touchdown against Northwestern • completed 11 passes for 129 yards and one touchdown against Washington State.
2015 • JUNIOR SEASON: Started all 13 games and completed 242-of-407 passes for 2,701 yards and 14 touchdowns • his 242 completions ranked third all-time in a single season (most ever for a junior quarterback), while his 407 attempts also place him third • passed for 2,701 yards, which is the most ever for a junior quarterback and the fourth-most ever in a single-season for a Gopher • rushed 107 times for 270 yards and six touchdowns • became the second Gopher quarterback (Mike Hohensee in 1982) ever to pass for 250 yards or more in four straight games • received Minnesota's Bronko Nagurski Award (team most valuable player), Bruce Smith Award (outstanding offensive player) and Neil Fredenburg Award (most courage and love of the game) • Academic All-Big Ten. Game-by-Game: Completed 19-of-35 passes against TCU for 197 yards and one touchdown • was 23-of-45 at Colorado State and passed for 233 yards and two touchdowns • also rushed for 47 yards on 11 attempts • led 12-play, 80-yard touchdown drive at Colorado State in 2:16 to take a 20-13 lead with 55 seconds left in the game • completed 17-of-27 passes for 184 yards and one touchdown against Kent State • completed 22-of-31 passes for a career high 264 yards against Ohio and also rushed for one touchdown • led 10-play, 78-yard touchdown drive against Ohio in 2:06 to take a 27-24 lead against Ohio with 30 seconds left in the game • started against Northwestern • was 8-of-12 passing for 59 yards and two touchdowns at Purdue and also rushed for one touchdown • caught his second career pass, a 16-yard gain from receiver KJ Maye, at Purdue • passed for 301 yards and one touchdown and set a career high in completions (26) against Nebraska • his 26 completions against Nebraska were the most by a Gopher since Adam Weber completed 26 passes against Penn State in 2010 • rushed for a touchdown against Nebraska • passed for a career-high 317 yards and one touchdown against Michigan's No. 1-ranked defense • rushed for 37 yards, which included a 24-yard score (longest of his career) against Michigan • his 317 yards were the most since Weber passed for 373 yards against a Jerry Kill-coached Northern Illinois team in 2010 • completed 27-of-44 passes for 281 yards and two touchdowns on the road against Ohio State's second-ranked pass defense • racked up 259 yards and one touchdown on 19-of-27 passing at Iowa and also rushed for 32 yards and one score • completed 15-of-25 passes for 88 yards and one touchdown against Illinois and also rushed 10 times for 64 yards • completed 16 passes for 223 yards and one touchdown against Wisconsin • completed 24-of-30 passes for 223 yards and one touchdown against Central Michigan, while also rushing nine times for 19 yards and one score • tied his own school record set in 2015 Citrus Bowl against Missouri (also shared with Adam Weber) with 14 straight completions against Central Michigan.
2014 • SOPHOMORE SEASON: Started 12 games, missing the San Jose State game with an injury • completed 122-of-237 passes for 1,798 yards and 11 touchdowns • rushed 126 times for 452 yards and 10 touchdowns (tied Billy Cockerham single-season record from 1999) • received the Neil Fredenburg Award, which is given to the player who shows the most courage and love of the game • Academic All-Big Ten. Game-by-Game: Rushed seven times for 15 yards and two touchdowns and was also 9-of-17 passing for 144 yards and one touchdown against Eastern Illinois • rushed five times for 32 yards and was 5-of-11 passing for 67 yards and one touchdown against Middle Tennessee • completed 12 passes for 151 yards at TCU • missed the San Jose State game with an injury • completed 14 passes for 167 yards and one touchdown and also rushed for one score at Michigan • was 10-of-15 for 153 yards against Northwestern and also rushed for 31 yards and two touchdowns • completed nine passes for 165 yards two touchdowns against Purdue and also rushed 13 times for 84 yards and one touchdown • completed 12 passes for 240 yards and one touchdown at Illinois • tossed four touchdowns on 10-of-13 passing for 138 yards against Iowa • carried the ball 11 times for 77 yards against Iowa • rushed for 56 yards and completed seven passes for 85 yards against Ohio State • rushed for 111 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries at Nebraska, while also passing for 135 yards • carried the ball 14 times for 54 yards and scored two touchdowns at Wisconsin • completed 21-of-31 passes for 258 yards and one touchdown against Missouri and also caught one pass (from David Cobb) for nine yards • tied school record (Adam Weber vs. Bowling Green in 2008) with 14 straight completions against Missouri.
2013 • FRESHMAN SEASON: Played in 10 games and started four • tied for the team lead (David Cobb) with seven touchdowns • completed 43-of-78 passes for 619 yards and three touchdowns • finished second on the team in rushing in attempts (102) and yards (407) • named Academic All-Big Ten. Game-by-Game: Made his collegiate debut against UNLV, where he rushed three times for 25 yards and scored his first career touchdown • rushed twice for 11 yards at New Mexico State • saw extensive action against Western Illinois, where he rushed 17 times for 64 yards and was 7-of-8 for 105 yards • made his first career start and rushed 24 times for 151 yards (eighth most in school history for a quarterback) against San Jose State • scored four rushing touchdowns against San Jose State to join Curtis Wilson (four rushing TDs against Indiana on Nov. 18, 1967) as the only quarterback in school history to score four times in one game • became only the eighth player in Minnesota history, and first since 2003, to score four or more touchdowns in one game • led team with 18 carries and 66 yards at Michigan • was 14-of-21 for 145 yards and tossed his first career touchdown pass (7 yards to Maxx Williams) at Michigan • started at Northwestern where he rushed seven times for 27 yards and was 1-of-3 passing for 11 yards • started against Nebraska and rushed for one touchdown • rushed six times for 35 yards and one touchdown (was 1-of-3 passing for 27 yards) as a reserve at Indiana • was 3-of-7 for 48 yards as a reserve at Michigan State • rushed for 24 yards on 13 carries and was 11-of-22 for 205 yards and two touchdowns against Syracuse.
2012: Redshirted • shared Offensive Work Team Player of the Year honors with running back Cole Banham.
HIGH SCHOOL: A 2011 graduate of Lakeville South High School • helped lead his team to a 15-7 record as a junior and senior, including a 2010 section championship • earned all-metro and all-conference honors as a senior • also named honorable mention all-state in 2011 • all-conference and honorable mention all-state choice as a junior in 2010 • passed for 2,096 yards and 17 scores in 2010 • tallied 1,872 yards and 20 passing touchdowns as a senior • holds school record for single-game touchdown passes with six • honorable mention all-conference selection in basketball as a junior • coached by Larry Thompson.
PERSONAL: Born Jan. 17, 1994 • son of Jeff and Carrie Leidner • has two brothers • younger brother Matt plays center for the Gophers • has already earned his degree in kinesiology • working on his master's degree in sport management.
Wolitarsky Winnipeg Bound
Former Minnesota receiver Drew Wolitarsky was selected by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the CFL supplemental draft.
Elite Access: Football Etiquette Dinner
The Gopher Football team participated in an etiquette dinner at TCF Bank Stadium in mid-June 2017 to learn about proper dinner etiquette and much more.
Football Staff Tours Athletes Village
The Gopher football coaching staff recently took a tour of the new Athletes Village which is scheduled to open in January.