1. College Football News Preview 2020: Minnesota Golden Gophers Win Total Prediction, What Will Happen
Beating Auburn in the Outback Bowl legitimized the greatest season of Minnesota Golden Gopher football since 1961.
The Gophers fattened up on an easy schedule – six of the first eight games were against teams that didn’t go bowling, and Georgia Southern and Illinois were the ones that did – there was the one giant win over a brand-name team at home against Penn State, and that was it.
Until the Outback.
That was a talented Auburn team that 1) beat Alabama and Oregon, 2) tried, and 3) was outplayed and outcoached in the 31-24 loss. It proved that Minnesota does have what it takes under PJ Fleck to win despite the lack of five-star talent.
Now do it all over again.
Last year was great, but those easy early games allowed the Gophers to survive bad performances against mediocre teams. There won’t be that luxury this year, but this version should be great right away.
The offense will be every bit as strong. As long as the running backs produce with a good rotation, the balance and efficiency won’t be a problem. The defensive losses are bad, but they’re not totally devastating. The production will take a step back, but the entire team is about to show that 2019 wasn’t a fluke.
Set The Minnesota Golden Gophers Regular Season Win Total At … 8
There are just enough tricky games to set the win total a wee bit lower than what’s being put out there.
There’s no Ohio State or Penn State on the schedule this season, but with a defense that loses almost all of the key parts, the Gophers are replacing Georgia Southern with BYU, have to go on the road to face Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan State and Nebraska, and have to hows Iowa, Michigan Purdue and Northwestern.
It’s all manageable, and there isn’t a game on the slate they can’t win, there are way too many 50/50 games, and the assumption has to be that Purdue, Northwestern, and Nebraska are going to be stronger.
That doesn’t mean this won’t be another great year with another wonderful team. It means the schedule won’t be quite as forgiving.