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Five Things You Need To Know: Gophers Host Northwestern

10/09/2012, 8:45am CDT
By U of M Athletic Communications

A game between the Northwestern Purple and Minnesota Golden Gophers on November 25, 1905, at Northrop Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Minnesota won the game 72–6.

Five Things You Need To Know

1. Minnesota returns to Big Ten action on Saturday when it hosts Northwestern. The Gophers have dropped two straight overall to the Wildcats and are looking for their first win against Northwestern since a 35-24 road win on Sept. 26, 2009. Minnesota's longest losing streak ever to Northwestern is three games, which has happened twice (1982-84 and 1994-96). The Gophers have also lost two straight to Northwestern at home. Minnesota's last home win against Northwestern was a 43-17 triumph on Sept. 25, 2004. The Gophers lead the overall series 50-32-5.

2. A win Saturday would be the fourth this year for the Gophers at TCF?Bank Stadium (team is 3-0 at home this year), which would equal their most homes wins in one season at their new stadium. The Gophers also won four games at TCF?Bank Stadium in 2009 (were 4-3 at home), which was the first year of the new facility. Minnesota won one game at TCF?Bank Stadium in 2010 and three at home last year. The last time Minnesota won more than four games at home was 2004. That year, the Gophers, who ended the season 7-5 overall, were 5-1 at the Metrodome.   

3. Minnesota celebrates homecoming this week when it welcomes Northwestern to TCF?Bank Stadium on Saturday. The Wildcats are a familiar homecoming foe for the Gophers, as this will be the 18th time that Minnesota has hosted Northwestern for a homecoming game. The Gophers hold an 8-7-2 record against Northwestern on homecoming. The Gophers have dropped two straight homecoming games, including a 29-28 loss to Northwestern in 2010. Minnesota's last homecoming win was a 35-20 triumph in 2009 against Purdue. The Gophers' last homecoming win against Northwestern was a 45-42 victory in 2002.

4. The Gophers are looking to get back into the win column after suffering their first loss of the season on Sept. 29. A Minnesota win would mark the first time that the Gophers ended a losing streak at only one game since 2009. Following a win against Michigan State, the Gophers lost to Illinois on Nov. 7, 2009, but then won the following week against South Dakota State. That was the last time Minnesota lost only one game between wins.

5. Minnesota scored only 13 points on Sept. 29 in a 31-13 loss at Iowa. It was the 22nd time that a team led by coach Kill scored 13 or fewer points with games remaining on the schedule. Twenty of the previous 21 times, coach Kill's teams bounced back and scored more than 13 points the next game (teams have actually averaged 18 more points the next game after scoring 13 or less). The one game where Minnesota failed to score more than 13 points was last season. The Gophers scored 13 points against Wisconsin and then scored 13 points against Northwestern.

A Gopher Victory would ...
• give Minnesota a 5-1 season start for the first time since 2008 (Gophers started 5-1 that year)
• be the team’s fourth home win this year, which would equal its most homes wins in one season at TCF Bank Stadium
(also won four games at TCF Bank Stadium in 2009)
• be their fifth of the season, giving Minnesota five wins in a season for the first time since 2009
• improve the team to 6-1 in their last seven games overall, dating back to last season
• improve Jerry Kill’s record at Minnesota to 8-10
• snap a two-game losing streak to Northwestern
• be the team’s first win against Northwestern at home since a 43-17 win in 2004 (lost at home in 2008 and 2010)
• be the program’s 651st victory

A Gopher Loss would ...
• be Minnesota’s second loss of the season
• be the team’s thrird straight to Northwestern
• give Minnesota an 0-2 start in the Big Ten for the third straight year
• be the program’s 463rd loss.



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