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The Daily Gopher will bring you the "Game Within the Game" live from the pressbox

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The University of Minnesota Athletic Communications Dept has decided to grant us media credentials for the remaining three home football games. The U of MN is ahead of the curve as I believe we are the only Big Ten centric blog to be allowed in the press box and one of only a few nationally. This is exciting news and we are very much looking forward to bringing you a new level of coverage on game day.

Typically the game dictates the story and that is what you will read Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning. You can get a typical game day story and game recap from a dozen or more places. The Star Tribune and Pioneer Press do a good job of giving you main stream media coverage of your Golden Gophers. We don't want to duplicate their work. With this new access we have decided that we want to bring you something unique.

We are going to do things backwards. We are going to decide the story to report before the game, tell you what we are going to do and then discuss it in great detail during and after. I'm calling it The Game Within the Game.

Here is how I see it working. Below you will see a handful of potential stories or match ups that I think would be interesting to cover for Saturday's game. I welcome you input on those stories or other suggestions. I'll eventually choose a couple. During the game that is exclusively what I will pay attention to. Post game that is primarily what I will talk to players/coaches about. You too will know what we are looking for and can watch the game with that in mind.

I'm anxious to see how this works. I think it gets the reader involved and gives you the opportunity to relay what will interest you about the game. If something spectacular happens I'm not going to ignor it but I'm going in knowing what I want to report on.

With all of that said below are my ideas for The Game Within the (Northwestern) Game...

  • Defending the most similar offense to our own. We are essentially facing the Dunbar Spread. I want to closely watch our secondary and see how they defend this version of the spread.
  • Brandon Green. After a breakout game how will he react on the field. Much has been made of how difficult the Spread Coast is for a young receiver to learn, I want to watch BG and see if he and Weber are on the same page. Can he have back to back impact games?
  • Offensive Line. This has been the biggest weakness this year. First of all I'd like to intently watch them to see how much help they are getting from RBs/TEs and what kind of holes they are or are not opening. I'd also love to talk with one of he veteran guys who played on last year's line which was a real strength.
  • Which CB is the most feared? I'd like to track on pass plays which CB gets thrown at more. This would be easy to track if intently watching, but then I'd like to ask some of our receivers who is more difficult to go up against in practice.
  • I know many of you question "The Play." How about digging into it deeper, breaking down blocking. Asking coaches why it is run, asking players what they see when running it. Maybe this isn't limited to just the read option that we see so often, but maybe there is another play that we have regular success with versus Northwestern.
  • How about a specific match up question? Are there any intriguing match ups on the field this week?

Those are the best I have come up with so far, please use the comments to give me more of what you want to see. I will also be trying to give you things from the press box that you can't get on TV. WR routes away from the ball and who was open, pending protection for Weber. Pass coverage as a whole, again particularly on what you won't see on the TV camera's narrower view. Due to NCAA rules I am limited to the amount of posting I can do from the press box, but I'll give you what I can.

Finally, if there is something else you'd like to see us do; something unique and something you aren't getting from other sources, let us know. We are open to brining you unique coverage and looking forward to what we can bring this weekend.

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