Nov 24, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA: A view of a Minnesota Golden Gophers helmet on the bench during the first half against the Michigan State Spartans at TCF Bank Stadium. Michigan State won 26-10. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE

Gopher Football begins full pad practices Tuesday

Golden Gopher Spring Football Practice at the Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex in Minneapolis, Minn.

On Tuesday, the University of Minnesota football team will put on full pads for the first time at their fall training camp. Though the team will look ready for contact, head coach Jerry Kill said that the team will wait until their first scrimmage on Saturday before really working tackling into the mix.

It has been an eventful first handful of days of practice for the Golden Gophers. The first three practice session were open to the public and after the Sat. scrimmage, the media nor fans will be allowed back into the Gibson-Nagurski football complex for the rest of the preseason.

Each day of practice thus far has taken on an identity. Day 1 was about how the team passed an athletic “eye test” in comparison to years past.

Day 2 in Dinkytown was all about the linebackers and about how unproven players will need to fill a weak spot in the Minnesota defense. On the third day, the focus of discussion amongst the media was about the quarterback stable and how the depth chart will work its way out.

In the most recent practice Monday, a single player took the focus among media members. Senior defensive lineman Roland Johnson is 100 percent healthy and will add some serious depth to the defensive tackle position after coming off an ACL injury.

It will be interesting to see what the main topic is to come out of Kill’s camp each day, but so far so good from various media outlets on how the team overall has impressed. Will that translate onto the playing field against another team? We will just have to wait and see.

In Other News…

  • There are only two shopping days until we celebrate Ra’Shede Hageman’s birthday. The defensive “freak” will turn 23 on Thursday. If you’re looking for the perfect gift, try checking out Destination XL. A big and tall men’s store located in Roseville. Hageman shares August birthdays on the football team with freshman wide receiver Brian Smith (Aug. 2), linebacker Jack Lynn (Aug. 6 – TODAY!), linebacker Jephte Matilus (Aug. 10), defensive back Brock Vereen (Aug. 17), tight end Lincoln Plsek (Aug. 18), defensive back Aaron Roundtree (Aug. 18), defensive end Ben Perry (Aug. 25), and coach Kill (Aug. 24). Start shopping!
  • The USA Hockey World Junior Championships Evaluation Camp is taking place currently in Lake Placid, N.Y. and Gophers men’s hockey coach Don Lucia is the main camp counselor, since he will serve the same role as head coach of Team USA in late Dec. In a game Mon. against Finland, incoming freshmen Taylor Cammarata was impressive with a goal and two assists and NHL.com took notice.

Tweet of the Day

If you caught a glimpse of a Maroon and Gold jersey, you were right! That was sophomore quarterback Philip Nelson on the side of the bus and the Big Ten Network will be at Gopher football practice on Friday, Aug. 16 with this beast. Though he is not on the conference practice tour, maybe former head coach and current BTN analyst Glen Mason will be there. Go say hi!

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Tags: Football Hockey Minnesota Golden Gophers Philip Nelson

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