Nov 24, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA: Minnesota Golden Gophers head coach Jerry Kill looks on from the sideline during the first half against the Michigan State Spartans at TCF Bank Stadium. Michigan State won 26-10. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

LB from Florida first Gopher commit of 2013

On Friday morning, Gopher faithful patiently waited for an answer from Rayfield Dixon.

The speedy high school linebacker was set to choose between Minnesota and West Virginia.  By 9 a.m., the fans got their wish.

The three-star Florida linebacker committed to coach Jerry Kill and the Gophers Friday, citing the relationships with the coaches as his biggest reason for committing.

He visited Minnesota, West Virginia, Purdue, Louisville, and Bowling Green over the past few months, and he felt that the Maroon and Gold was his top fit.

Dixon will likely come in as a freshman and fight for playing time as a linebacker.  He runs a 4.7 40.

On a 6-7 football team, it’s easy to find weaknesses.  Perhaps the biggest weakness for Minnesota this past season was with the linebacking corp.  Seniors Mike Rallis and Keanon Cooper did not play up to expectations.  Both are graduating along with two other senior linebackers.

Players like Dixon and junior-college commit Damien Wilson will vie for starting spots when they get to campus.  The football program is expected to add at least one more wide receiver, linebacker, and defensive back to the class of 2013.

The Gophers have just around a dozen players graduating this season, so the recruiting journey has always been tight for the program.

The coaching staff has been careful with its future commitments by telling them to only commit when they are truly certain.


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