The Golden Gophers’ 2019 Schedule: Part One
The Golden Gophers’ 2019 schedule looks to be quite favorable, both in- and out-of-conference. Their Big Ten East opponents don’t include Michigan, Michigan State, or Ohio State. In addition, two of their five road games will be at Fresno State and Rutgers. Here is part one of a game-by-game look at the Gophers’ 2019 schedule:
August 29 vs. South Dakota State
Let’s just avoid getting anyone injured, shall we?
September 7 at Fresno State
When these teams faced off in the Twin Cities a year ago, Minnesota won 21-14. I don’t expect a blowout, but Minnesota should win this by a similar or slightly larger margin.
September 14 vs. Georgia Southern
The backups should get some action in this one.
September 28 at Purdue
This will be the first true test for Minnesota as Purdue will have already faced both Vanderbilt and TCU. The Boilermakers are breaking in a new quarterback, but he’ll have receiver Rondale Moore to throw to. Most of the defensive starters are returning as well. This won’t be a repeat of last year’s 41-10 shocker in the Gophers’ favor. I could see this going either way, but I’ll give Purdue the edge as the home team.
October 5 vs. Illinois
Stranger things have happened, but unless the Illini are far better than expected, this should be a fifth win for Minnesota.
October 12 vs. Nebraska
Year Two under coach Scott Frost and quarterback Adrian Martinez should yield improvements for the Huskers. After finishing 4-8 two years in a row, there’s almost nowhere to go but up. Ironically, one of their wins last season was a 53-28 stomping of Minnesota, for which the Gophers will surely want revenge.
There’s no doubt that Nebraska will be better this year. The question is by how much? I think this game will be close through at least the first half, maybe three quarters, but Minnesota will pull away late.
The first half of the Golden Gophers’ 2019 schedule is not overly challenging. They should be 5-1 at the midway point of the season. Purdue and Nebraska will likely be their only competitive games in the first half. As is always the case, the difficulty picks up in the second half as conference play starts.