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Updated: July 16th, 2013 3:16pm
Gophers reinstate sophomore wide receiver Andre McDonald

Gophers reinstate sophomore wide receiver Andre McDonald

by Nate Sandell
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Sophomore wide receiver Andre McDonald is back with the Gophers football team.

After being suspended in December and later dismissed from the team for "violation of team policy," the Gophers have reinstated McDonald, a team spokesperson confirmed on Tuesday.

Since his arrival at Minnesota last season, McDonald has battled with a variety of personal issues. He was suspended in the lead-up to the Gophers' appearance in the Meineke Car Care Bowl. Following his dismissal from the team, McDonald did not enroll at the University of Minnesota for spring semester.

But coach Jerry Kill always left open the possibility open for McDonald's return, stating in June that he was "cautiously optimistic" the young receiver would be back by the start of fall camp on August 1.

In the last few months, the former Hopkins High School star seemed to be moving in the right direction, having enrolled in summer classes and resumed workouts with his teammates.

McDonald's name has been added back to the Gophers' online roster as well.

The pressure is now on McDonald to continue to prove he is worthy of the second chance.

"He's got another opporutnity ... Now it's up to him," Kill said in a brief talk Tuesday at the Gophers' practice facility.

McDonald tweeted earlier in the afternoon: "I appreciate all the positive encouragement! Ill make all the fans proud! #thatsApromise #ski-u-mah #GopherFootball."

As a true freshman, McDonald played in eight games and accounted for 121 yards off eight catches.

His reinstatement is a welcomed boost for a Gophers receiving corps still in need of depth. How McDonald fits into the Gophers' current setup is still to be determined. But beyond receivers Isaac Fruechte and Derrick Engel, playing time at receiver is up for grabs.

Nate Sandell is a contributor to
Email Nate | @nsandell