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Monday, December 8, 2008

It’s official: KU to meet Gophers in Insight

The waiting game is over: KU will face Minnesota in the Insight Bowl

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After three days of uncertainty surrounding its postseason fate, Kansas University’s football team now has an opponent for which to game-plan.

The Jayhawks (7-5 overall, 4-4 in the Big 12), having accepted a bid to play in the Insight Bowl on Friday, learned Sunday they will meet Minnesota (7-5, 3-5 in the Big Ten) on Dec. 31 in Tempe, Ariz. — a game set to kick off at 5 p.m. and air on the NFL Network.

“Minnesota has made huge strides in their second season under (coach) Tim Brewster,” Kansas coach Mark Mangino said. “They are making outstanding progress and will be a formidable bowl opponent.”

Despite a late-season slide, the Golden Gophers managed to re-establish themselves as a viable presence in the Big Ten in 2008. Just one year removed from a 1-11 season — Brewster’s first year as head coach — Minnesota rebounded with the nation’s best turnaround in ’08.

The Gophers jumped to a 7-1 start this fall and climbed as high as No. 20 in the Associated Press poll before dropping their final four games of the regular season.

But the significance of the Gophers’ resurrection this season hasn’t been lost on the team’s coaching staff, which helped lead Minnesota to its eighth bowl in the past 10 seasons.

Said Brewster, who replaced former Kansas coach Glen Mason at Minnesota in 2007, “I could not be more proud of what our team has accomplished this season, and I am thrilled that all their hard work is being rewarded with an opportunity to play in a tremendous event like the Insight Bowl.”

The Gophers will be making their second trip to the Insight Bowl in the past three years — they fell, 44-41, to Texas Tech in overtime in the 2006 game — and the 13th bowl in school history.

Kansas and Minnesota have split six previous meetings, the most recent being a 34-19 KU victory in Lawrence in 1973.

Kansas will be appearing in back-to-back bowls for the first time in school history, looking to improve upon its 5-6 all-time postseason record.

“We did hit a few road bumps this season, and (we) played some pretty dang good football teams,” junior QB Todd Reesing said. “But we still have a good team, and we’re still going to compete in the Big 12 — and nationally. And we want to go out there and prove that again in this bowl game.”

Comments

Kevin Sontag 13 years, 1 month ago

Does it kick-off at 5 ET or 5:30 ET? I've seen both times floating out there on the interwebs...

jayhawk2062 13 years, 1 month ago

Pregame starts at 4:30 pm CST, game time is at 5pm CST

JayCeph 13 years, 1 month ago

NFL network? Does anyone actually get this channel? I hope some local NE KS area network affiliates option the game and show it on a station that people will actually get to watch.

jayhawk2062 13 years, 1 month ago

we get nfl network on the sports tier through Sunflower.not sure about everyone else.

plotku 13 years, 1 month ago

TImewarner Cable you have to pay extra to get it, Why heck is the NFL network carrying a college game anyway?

thjhawk 13 years, 1 month ago

I live in Tennessee, I was so looking forward to watching this game. Oh well will have to settle for listening to it over the net. This is rediculous! We should have turned this bowl down for a lesser one that at least people including prospective recruits could watch. Rock on Hawks.

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