Mark Blaudschun

It is different now for Minnesota quarterback Tanner Morgan.

No longer is he just a footnote to the weekly college football highlight films, part of a profile of a Minnesota team which was winning week after week with virtually no attention outside of the Twin Cities area.

It all changed on Saturday when the Gophers had their first spotlight dance of the 2019 season, a head to head match up with unbeaten and newly minted No. 4 ranked Penn State.

It didn't matter that Minnesota was also unbeaten, working on its best season in more than 50 years. The Gophers had won, sure but who had they beaten? South Dakota State? Fresno State? Georgia Southern? And even in the Big Ten they had romped past the bottom feeders such as Maryland and Rutgers?

Penn State would be different.

Well, Yes, it was and Morgan, who had already proven himself capable of doing big thing a year ago in leading the Gophers to wins over Wisconsin and Georgia Tech (in the Quick Lane Bowl) was more than ready.

So were the Gophers who posted a 31-26 victory, keyed by Morgan, who was nearly flawless, with an 18-20 output, which produced 339 passing yards and 3 TDs.

It was a superb effort in a mile post game for the Gophers and for Tanner, who knows he must do it again this week when Minnesota travels to Iowa City for a meeting with the dangerous Iowa Hawkeyes in what looks like a classic ""let down'' game for the Gophers.

Iowa has been established as a 3 point favorite, which is another challenge for Minnesota, which was a TD underdog to Penn State.

For now none of that matters. And for Tanner Morgan, his performance against Penn State was good enough to make him TMG's Newsmaker of The Week.


Mark Blaudschun