Monday, October 13, 2008

So this is how Minnesota fans handle winning

I debated about whether to even respond to the comments some of the Gopher faithful made to my last post. I think I was actually misunderstood so I thought I'd write to correct the record and provide some additional comments.

Minnesota played a very good football game Saturday and deserved to win. They have a very good team and Brewster appears poised to take them far. However, I don't think I can be convinced that Minnesota has more talent than Illinois at this point, which makes this an even worse loss for us and the reason I was expecting a win. We lost because we didn't want the game as bad as Minnesota did and we made way too many dumb mistakes. This isn't whining. It's not an excuse. It's the truth and the reason we lost.

Minnesota fans may disagree with me but if they do it actually diminishes the win for them. It's a pretty big deal to beat a team when you are overmatched, which is what happened Saturday.

As to the classlessness, I revise my earlier comments to say that there was poor sportsmanship on both sides of the ball. However, I just watched the game tape. There is a difference between playing hard and playing dirty. The Gophers did both.

Juice was hit after he was out of bounds (by about two feet). Some of those penalties where the player gets hit out of bounds are questionable but in this one, Hightower showed absolutely no hint of even trying to slow down.

As for the Van De Steeg incident, he actually threw it down on Benn first (when Benn didn't have the ball and wasn't even close to where the play was being made). Benn retaliated when he probably should have walked away and that's when Van De Steeg clearly threw a punch at Benn. I love the Minnesota fan who justifies this by saying they all had full pads on so punching is ok. I'm sure folks would feel the same way if Brit Miller clocked their quarterback or best receiver. Last I checked they're playing football, not boxing.

And apparently the Big Ten likes to reward bad behavior because it named Van De Steeg co-defensive player of the week. Brilliant.

The Gopher faithful who read this may say I'm whining but I still believe it's honorable to play with class. I like to respect the teams that beat the ones I root for but I won't do that if they play dirty.

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