Minnesota Football: TDG Staff Predictions for Gopher Football 2013

The Daily Gopher

Time again for the TDG Staff predictions for the 2013 season.  I've asked everyone who contributes to the blog to give me their predictions for each game of the season.  There is a nice grid on the bottom of the post showing you how everyone thinks the season will play out.

Last year the predicting champion was JDMill who was a perfect 12-0!  Very impressive and it brought his 3-year record up to 24-12.

2009 2010 2011 2012 4-year Total Win %
GN 11-1 8-4 5-7 9-3 33-15 0.688
JDM 7-5 5-7 12-0 24-12 0.667
Jeffrick 6-6 5-7 10-2 21-15 0.583
GoAUpher 8-4 8-4 0.667

But we are moving on to 2013 and below are your TDG Staff Predictions...

GopherNation

UNLV: WIN - The Runnin Rebs might be better than they were a year ago but so are we and this one is at home.  I don't think this one will be very close.

@ NMSU: WIN - This also shouldn't be all that close but I do kind of like the fact that this is a road game.  Getting a chance to learn the routine of traveling, staying in a hotel,  etc and then facing a team we should beat, should be good experience.  Confidence builder for future road games.

Western Illinois: WIN - We should see a lot of Leidner in this one.

San Jose State: WIN - this one isn't as much of a lock as some might think.  Quarterback, David Fales is one of the best QBs we'll see all year and he is likely to be drafted in the first 3 rounds next year.  They have some legit players but I think this will be a win for the Gophers.

Iowa: WIN - 3-0 vs. the Hawkeyes at TCF Bank Stadium!  Assuming we are healthy, I think we'll be playing with confidence and we'll be ready to beat an Iowa team that is very beatable. My biggest fear with this game is overconfidence, you can see that alll 5 of us here predict a win and many power rankings have the Gophers ahead of Iowa.

@ Michigan: LOSS - Gophers will come into this with a 5-0 record and ready to pounce on the Wolverines.  But not in the Big House and not after Michigan has a bye week to get fresh and prepare for their Big Ten opener.  I actually think we might make this one interesting but not enough for me to predict a win.

@ Northwestern: LOSS - I've predicted a win over Northwestern the last 3 years and have obviously been wrong each time.  This time I'm going for the emotional hedge; if I'm right then at least I get credit for that and if I'm wrong then the Gophers notched a road win over a likely ranked team.

Nebraska: WIN - I believe the Gophers will have one big upset win this year and the trick is figuring out which game that will be.  I'm going with this home game against Nebraska.  The Skurs will come into this game undefeated and thinking highly of themselves.  But this defense will still stink and we'll take advantage of a few too many Nebraska mistakes.  We won't get to house a trophy for this win but this will get some national attention for the program as we move to 6 wins.

@ Indiana: WIN - I'm not at all a believer that Indiana is going to be much improved.  They have some offensive weapons but their defense will be at or near the bottom of the league.

Penn State: LOSS - I don't know what to make of this game.  There isn't a lot of depth at PSU beyond their very talented starting 2-deep.  If they have a couple injuries through 9 or 10 weeks, then maybe the Gophers have a shot.  Maybe they have a shot anyway, but I'm going to pick the Nittany Lions here.

Wisconsin: LOSS - another team I have picked to lose to the  Gophers in upset fashion the last couple years; and I've been wrong.  Were this game much earlier in the Big Ten season, I might pick the Gophers.  But Wisconsin will have a couple of relatively easy games leading up to this one and won't be overlooking Minnesota.

@ Michigan State: LOSS - Road game to end the season against a very good defense.

7-5 is my season prediction with a big upset win in the mix.

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GoAUpher

UNLV: WIN. UNLV is terrible, the game is at home. Not sure what else needs to be said.

@NMSU: WIN. Seriously, the Aggies are probably worse than UNLV.

Western Illinois: WIN. You all know why.

San Jose State: WIN. Toughest game of the non-con but I have to believe that our defense is capable of slowing QB David Fales. If we can't win this game then a bowl game starts to look very dicey. And I see us bowling which means this is a W.

Iowa: WIN. I don't see good things for Iowa this season. I also want to see Floyd back in Minneapolis. That means there is only one reasonable conclusion.

@ Michigan: LOSS. The Gophers are better, but not win on the road in the Big House better. I don't expect a blowout though.

@ Northwestern: LOSS. I'm drinking the purple kool-aid and think Fitz's boys are going to have a big year. I don't think they're a dominant team, but I do think they'll end up on the right side of the sort of close games they lost last season. And while I think the Gophers could make it interesting, I don't expect a close loss.

Nebraska: LOSS. My expectations for this season are firmly planted in the pragmatic. Which means no home upset over the Huskers.

@ Indiana: WIN. Indiana will probably be better than last season, but I don't see them bowling or beating the Gophers.

Penn State: LOSS. This is probably the game I'm most likely to be wrong about. But as I said above, I'm keeping my optimism in check.

Wisconsin: WIN. Because the Axe needs to stay in Minnesota dammit.

@ Michigan State: LOSS. Unless our offense is really clicking by this point in the season, I don't see the Gophers scoring enough points to pull out a road win to end the year.

FINAL RECORD: 7-5 (3-5)

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Jeffrick

UNLV: WIN. My first game as a season ticket holder, so win, obviously. If not, this season could make that After Earth movie look like a success.

@NMSU: WIN. And that is all.

Western Illinois: WIN. It's a 1-AA school that's not from the Dakotas, and Tim Brewster is not the Gopher's coach. So I like Minnesota's chances.

San Jose State: WIN. Let's hope this is a night game and not an 11am start. Football after dark definitely helps the home crowd as the Gopher D gets their first real test. And passes.

Iowa: WIN. Coach Kill won't even need a pregame speech. Just show clips from last year's game of Marc Weisman running again and again and again for big gains. It makes me angry just thinking about it, so I have to imgaine motivation will not be a problem for this one. Minnesota's the better team, and at home.

@ Michigan: LOSS. The undefeated season comes to an end. I'm hoping this game is at least much closer than last year. Or the year before...or the year before...or the year before...

@ Northwestern: LOSS. Every year I pick Minnesota to beat NU. And every year it doesn't happen. So I'll try the ol' reverse jinx and pick Minnesota to lose, hoping that it results in a win.

Nebraska: LOSS. Ok so three losses in a row aren't good, but what kind of losses these will be should say something. If 2 of the 3 are blowouts like last year, we're not going to be feeling good about this team.

@ Indiana: WIN. For ALL the bowling!

Penn State: WIN.

Wisconsin: LOSS. I've done a 180 on the BADgers- for most of the off-season I've thought them conmpletely overrated. For a program that's had zero change in the past 20+ years, a new coach and a new scheme isn't likely to go over well, right? Well what if I'm wrong. What if Andersen is a really good coach? We know the guy before him was good at popping his collar, being a bro, and running up the score on inferior opponents, but as Arkansas is going to find out soon, he may not be a very good coach.

@ Michigan State: LOSS. Unless our offense is really clicking by this point in the season, I don't see the Gophers scoring enough points to pull out a road win to end the year.

FINAL RECORD: 7-5 (3-5)

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PucketWept

UNLV: WIN

@ NMSU: WIN

Western Illinois: WIN

San Jose State: WIN

Iowa: WIN

@ Michigan: LOSS

@ Northwestern: LOSS

Nebraska: LOSS

@ Indiana: WIN

Penn State: LOSS

Wisconsin: WIN

@ Michigan State: LOSS

FINAL RECORD: 7-5(3-5)

I picked the Gophers to beat Wisconsin as an upset; in my opinion Jerry Kill needs a win against Iowa and in at least one other rivalry game.

Admittedly, this is probably one win too high. I'm a bit concerned about the #YEAR3 hype because I think things set up more easily for a jump in wins next year, rather than in 2013.  This team's main goals should be bowl eligibility again, along with bringing Floyd and the Axe back home together for the first time since 1993.

--------------------

Matt

NON-EDITED NOTE FROM MATT (AND NOT HIS BENEVOLENT BUT IRON FISTED OVERLORDS): All of these predictions are off the cuff. I'm still providing you with Models and Bottles prediction goodness, starting next week. Moving on.

UNLV: Win. So, this is apparently real:

Kill can add Hauck's pelt to his growing list of coaches fired after losing to him. And Marcus will get his late #FULLERTWEET cover when Mitch Leidner plays the last 2 series.

@NMSU: Win. I won't say that the results of this game will be a nightmare in Las Cruces, since that's an actual thing and a really terrible thing at that. But the results of this game won't be pretty; not even the Pistol Pete helmets will save the Rebels here.

Western Illinois: Win. WIU's head coach is a guy named Bob Nielson, who just so happens to have led Minnesota-Duluth to the 2008 and 2010 D2 National Championships. If Kill were more like Time Brewster and lost to Nielson, Reusse would have a built in column about how Maturi "should have hired Nielson -a proven Minnesota winner!"

Except Kill is nothing like Brewster, and the Gophers won't lose to another (shitty) FCS team.

SJSU: Win. And thus, the streak of Minnesota playing a non-AQ opponent coming off an amazing season and scaring the fanbase half to death continues.

In 2008, it was Florida Atlantic. In 2009, Air Force. 2010, Middle Tennessee. 2011, Miami (OH). 2012, Western Michigan.

In case you don't remember, the Gophers won each of those games, just like they'll win this one.

Iowa: Win. Aside from the peaking 2002 and 2008 squads, the Hawkeyes don't play all that well in Minneapolis. Ferentz doesn't have a team with anywhere near the talent of those two seasons. Floyd gets drunk at Burrito Loco again.

@Michigan: Loss. I'd chuckle for months, since there are few things that get Brian from mgoblog worked up quite like recalling the Gary Russell run and subsequent Meatchicken loss from 2005. I just don't see it in the figurative cards I have in my hand though.

BYE: Bye week jokes are lame. I hereby propose all bye week/scrimmage/spring game jokes about "picking up a loss" are placed into a cannon and fired into a black hole.

@jNWU: Win. IT'S A TRAP! The Nerds have a stretch where they play Ohio State, @Wisconsin, the Gophers, @Iowa for their annual trolling of Ferentz and @Nebraska before a bye. I'll be stunned if they win more than 2 games in that stretch, and frankly, may be too beat up in a game that really is the trap in their tough opening.

Nebraska: Win. YEP! I SAID IT. How's the old line go, you can't spell Pelini without 4 L's? Ah, that's the one. Every year, Bo loses a regular season game that he has absolutely no business dropping:

2009: Even with Suh, the Huskers bumble it away to Iowa State 7-9. At home.

2010: Pelini falls 13-20 at home to Texas. The 5-7 Longhorns, mind you.

2011: Huskers fall to the Nerds, at home.

2012: No regular season inexplicable losses (kind of in a box here) but the B1GCG was pathetic. And they should have lost to the Nerds again.

Pelini's inexcusable L will probably come at the hands of Michigan State at home, but screw it -- I'm all in here.

@Indiana: Loss. Don't know what it is about the Gophers playing in Indiana. Place just has a weird hoodoo over us.

Penn State: Win. Ha! Bounce back time! Nice job last year, BOB. Now try it again, with a true freshman quarterback and without that core group of seniors.

Wisconsin: Win. Another team that, despite what their idiot fanbase believes, don't exactly run us off our own turf when they come to town (#ALLRUSSELLWILSONEVERYTHING notwithstanding). Axe losing streak ends this year.

@Sparty: Loss. Dantonio will prove this year that his defense is so good, not even a four headed QB hydra could screw it up.

FINAL RECORD: 9-3 (5-3)

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JDMill

UNLV: Win. I gotta tell ya, I think Texas Toast is completely underrated as far as sandwich handles go.

@NMSU: Win. Little known fact about me: I am a man in his mid-30's and I prefer to write in pencil.

Western Illinois: Win. I really like a good dive bar, and I'm not talking about a hipster dive bar. I'm talking about a bar where people of all ages go to drink cheap booze and BS with the bartender, play pool and play the juke box. Most importantly, this dive bar should have no food other than bags of pretzel's, Andy's Hot Fries, and Heggie's Pizza.

San Jose State: Win. When having a business conversation, don't use the word "bro." Ever.

Iowa: Win. Do yourself a favor and read what Noah Sweat had to say about whisky.

@ Michigan: Loss. I go through quite a lot of New Skin Liquid Bandage, but not nearly as much as my father-in-law.

@ Northwestern: Win. Are smartphones still capable of taking pictures without Instagram? My Facebook wall would suggest they are not.

Nebraska: Loss. I don't know about you, but each time a camera or phone comes out I get this Pavlovian-like response where my hand goes right to my hip.

@ Indiana: Win. "One day, one night, Saturday's alright, online's just fine, night time, anytime..." Your welcome.

Penn State: Loss. Top 5 songs of all time: "Family Tradition" by Hank Williams Jr, "Your Love" by The Outfield, "Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy)" by Big & Rich, "Alive" by Pearl Jam, "The Metal" by Tenacious D

Wisconsin: Loss. There's no easy way to say this, so I'm just going to come right out with it: I do NOT like hoppy beers.

@ Michigan State: Win. You guys know I went 12-0 on these predictions last season, right?

FINAL RECORD: 8-4 (4-4)

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There you have the staff predictions.  We unanimously agree that the team will start off 5-0 and then lose to Michigan.  After that the remaining 6 Big Ten games are anyone's guesses.

GN JD Jeffrick GoAUpher Matt PuckettWept
UNLV W W W W W W
@New Mexico St W W W W W W
Western Illinois W W W W W W
San Jose St W W W W W W
Iowa W W W W W W
@Michigan L L L L L L
@Northwestern L W L L W L
Nebraska W L L L W L
@Indiana W W W W L W
Penn St W L W L W L
Wisconsin L L L W W W
@Michigan St L W L L L L
7-5 (3-5) 8-4 (4-4) 7-5 (3-5) 7-5 (3-5) 9-3 (5-3) 7-5 (3-5)

Ski-U-Mah

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