Wolfson: Gophers staff widely outcoached Iowa's in upset victory
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MINNEAPOLIS -- The best moment of Saturday's Gophers win over Iowa came outside of Gate B of TCF Bank Stadium at approximately 5:55 p.m.
A student was nearly in tears, recalling with his friends the moment he got to touch Gophers coach Jerry Kill and the Floyd of Rosedale just a few minutes earlier.
Other students were frantically calling their friends, asking if they saw them storm the field.
The most disgusting moment came when a couple Iowa fans in Section 113 -- whom I can neither confirm nor deny had intimate relations in a stadium bathroom before the game -- were kicked out for vomiting all around their seats.
The funniest moment came during the celebration when a couple fans got their picture "Tebowing" on the logo at the 50-yard line.
The most overzealous moment came immediately after the coaches handshake when a CSC security guard turned into "Paul Blart: Mall Cop" and was tripping, knocking over, stampeding and tackling students trying to get onto the field. Meantime, every other co-worker of his realized the magnitude of the moment and was carefully helping the fans get safely onto the playing surface.
The saddest moment was thinking about Jill Frankhauser, who lost her 36-year-old husband, Jim, to cancer two weeks ago. It was just last November that Jill captured Jim on their camera running onto the field to embrace Floyd. Jim was supposed to be on a family hunting trip this weekend. Instead, he got to see the entire game from the best seat in the house and no doubt got to enjoy the victory afterward.
The worst coaching moment(s) came courtesy of Iowa's Kirk Ferentz, whose last offensive series ignored running back Marcus Coker (257 yards rushing) and wide receiver Marvin McNutt (seven catches, 101 yards). No surprise, they went four-and-out.
And even with his conservative approach, Ferentz should've gone for it on fourth-and-2 late in the first quarter. Coker, who was on the sideline for the three previous plays after galloping 50 yards (and 62 total on the drive), was bound to convert. Compounding the mistake was the shocking 24-yard field goal miss by Mike Meyer.
Then, with 1:07 left in the first half, Ferentz was OK going into the locker room tied at 7 even though he had two timeouts and two dynamic offensive weapons and was aware he had to kickoff to start the second half.
The most shocking in-game moment came when backup walk-on kicker Jordan Wettstein, filling in for Chris Hawthorne (muscle strain in kicking leg), perfectly executed an onside kick. Safety Kim Royston recovered it.
On the next possession, the Gophers scored on fourth-and-goal from the 3-yard line on a Gray run to take a 22-21 lead. The video that precedes the Gophers taking the field before the opening kickoff featured a scripted line, "We will fight for every yard, every inch, every down." That touchdown run was evidence.
Those fans in Sections 113 and 114 who left after Iowa made it 21-10 early in the fourth quarter had to be kicking themselves.
They missed an 11-play Gophers scoring drive that featured 10 runs. The touchdown by Bennett made it 21-16. The two-point conversion failed when backup quarterback Max Shortell, who hadn't taken a snap in the first three quarters, threw an incomplete pass. It was the coaching staff's only miss of the game.
The best statistic was the Gophers sacking Iowa quarterback James Vandenberg three times and not allowing any sacks. Entering the game, the Gophers were tied for last in Division I-A with just five sacks.
A close second was the Gophers not losing the turnover battle (1-1).
The most disappointing moment was not taking advantage of the SuperCuts massive discount, which comes when the Gophers either A) score 24 points; or B) return a punt or kick for a touchdown.
But that is swiftly erased knowing there's now ammo in any interoffice/school/Facebook/Twitter/e-mail/Google Plus argument with Hawkeyes fans for the next year.
Just tell them: that swine is mine.