Dan Wolken - USA TODAY - Minnesota Worth Another Look

MNVCGUY

Active member
Here is the text for those interested.

Minnesota is worth a second look
We kind of dismissed the Golden Gophers after they got a little bit lucky to beat South Dakota State, Fresno State and Georgia Southern by a combined 13 points the first three weeks of the season. But P.J. Fleck’s team put a complete game together in a 34-7 win over Nebraska to move to 6-0 this season. That’s significant because it makes Minnesota bowl eligible for a second straight year, and at 3-0 in the Big Ten, matches last season’s conference win total.

But with Rutgers, Maryland and Northwestern still on the schedule, Minnesota has a very manageable path to nine wins and perhaps more if it can pull an upset over Penn State, Iowa or Wisconsin.

Fleck isn't everyone’s cup of tea. One reason he ended up at Minnesota rather than a higher-profile program is that some administrators thought his “Row the Boat” shtick at Western Michigan smelled a bit inauthentic despite the undeniable success he had in the Mid-American Conference. But it will be interesting to see if Fleck generates some interest again on the coaching carousel if Minnesota puts together a breakthrough season.


Probably not the last time we will see things like that final paragraph if we keep on winning. As long as we are winning I guess it really doesn't matter what people say.
 

PitinoFan

Active member
Well, I just read through a bunch of Tweets from Mississippi State fans wanting them to open the vault to get PJ to go there, so be ready for it. Some Florida State fans were tweeting about wanting him too.


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Vandy

Active member
PJ will stick with our "Sleeping Giant", as he put it. Win and this administration will take care of his business. The new Prez knows what value successful sports programs brings to the "U"...... No need to go anywhere.

The Giant is waking from it's slumber.
 

BTChamp

Member
Well, I just read through a bunch of Tweets from Mississippi State fans wanting them to open the vault to get PJ to go there, so be ready for it. Some Florida State fans were tweeting about wanting him too.

He'd never succeed at Florida State. The players need to able to spell and to stay out of prison. Just kidding, but it is good he is making a good reputation for himself and the U.
 

U2Gopher

Active member
PJ will stick with our "Sleeping Giant", as he put it. Win and this administration will take care of his business. The new Prez knows what value successful sports programs brings to the "U"...... No need to go anywhere.

The Giant is waking from it's slumber.
This^^^


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BilldGopher

Section 211
I think Coach likes this type of weather and conditions for a game.

Cramping not an issue...frostburn maybe...but no pickle juice line item in the October-November budget.
 

mnsportsgeek

Active member
I think as long as the administration treats him fairly then we can expect PJ to stick around for a long time if we’ll have him.
 

Yah-E

Bulieve
It’ll be about the money! When we end up with a 9+ win season and get to a superior bowl game this year, then I hope our University will lock in Fleck with a longer term contract with more money.

If Fleck gets recruited and goes, it’s hard for me to see who can fill Fleck’s culture around here. Unless Tony Dungy comes here...then I’m good.
 

Face The Facts

Fleck Superfan
I don't think PJ is interested in PAC12 or SEC. I think he's a Big Ten guy.

Places I could see him go to:
Notre Dame
Michigan
Ohio St
Penn St
Michigan St

a few others, but not many.

My guess is he and Heather might actually like it here, and if we keep extending him every year like we have (and the administration keeps working with him like they have), not much reason for him to leave.
 

John Galt

Active member
Well, I just read through a bunch of Tweets from Mississippi State fans wanting them to open the vault to get PJ to go there, so be ready for it. Some Florida State fans were tweeting about wanting him too.


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You mean they’d take PJ over Frost??? What about Lovie, a coach that made it to the Super Bowl?
 

CoMn

Member
If you like the B1G, Minneapolis is a great place. His recruiting connections are in the midwest (and apparently Georgia). If he went to a big name school he'd have a lot more pressure and if things didn't go perfectly, he'd get fired. We'd never fire him! Here he'll get all the credit for creating everything. It is his program, his way and he can call the shots here for a long time with a lot less winning than would be demanded at Notre Dame, Florida, and Mississippi St. That being said, there may be an opening in Michigan sooner than later...I'd be scared if they came calling.
 
I really doubt PJ is going anywhere any time soon. Power 5 head coaches leaving voluntarily for other power 5 jobs isn't too common and Fleck seems like a very bad candidate for that. His style of coaching led to quite a few players leaving Minnesota when he got hired. That's only going to be worse at a better program with players with bigger egos who have more transfer options and as transferring becomes more common. It also takes about 3 years for him to build his team up to a pretty good team. It worked here because we were more patient. If he goes to OSU or Notre Dame and is below .500 after two years and talks about progress they're going to run him out of town. Plus the helmet schools will restrict his use of "row the boat" and he's already moved his family with young kids once recently.

The two biggest reasons I could see him leaving are if he feels that we aren't paying him and his assistants enough or if after building his team up he feels that the location is stopping him from recruiting as well as other schools. So far we haven't seen either of those so they seem unlikely and if they happen that won't be for a while.
 

fmlizard

Active member
We’re at that point now where every “hey, the Gophers are good” article is going to also include speculation that PJ is leaving.

Minnesota is Big Ten and has BTN money coming out the wazoo. The facilities are brand new. The U has tons of money they could pay for a winner.

The only reason this is considered a mediocre job is because the Gophers haven’t won a lot. Change that part and get people to show up for games and suddenly it’s an A list gig.
 

MNVCGUY

Active member
We’re at that point now where every “hey, the Gophers are good” article is going to also include speculation that PJ is leaving.

Minnesota is Big Ten and has BTN money coming out the wazoo. The facilities are brand new. The U has tons of money they could pay for a winner.

The only reason this is considered a mediocre job is because the Gophers haven’t won a lot. Change that part and get people to show up for games and suddenly it’s an A list gig.
Hopefully we will get to find out just where Fleck stands because if he does end up being courted by other schools it will mean we are doing well.

Fleck has given off the impression that it isn't just about the money for him, heck it isn't just about football for him. He always talks about building well rounded players on the field and off the field. Honestly, Minnesota is the perfect place for his brand. There will be pressure to win, that goes with the territory, but the pressure will be significantly less here then it would be at a helmet school (the only kind of school that would have any shot of prying Fleck away).

The U has embraced Row the Boat, not every place would be willing to do that. As long as the administration is willing to support him structurally and financially and he believes he can win consistently, there really is zero reason for him to leave the U and start over somewhere else.

Your last statement is very true. Minnesota has been an also ran for so long that people seem to talk about it like it is a MAC job. Built the right way this program can compete for Big Ten West and Big Ten titles on a year in year out basis. If you are competing for Big Ten championships as a coach there are not going to be many places that would be more attractive.
 

alchemy2u

Active member
PJ is exactly where he wants to be and were he fits. He took over a dormant B1G school were he can become the man.

As long as they treat him fairly, he will be coach of the Gophers and make it a helmet school once again.

I believe him when he said that Minnesota was one of his dream schools. He knows where he fits.

It would compromise his whole “culture” to cater to those 5 star players and boosters that expect people to kiss their azz.




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Pompous Elitist

Active member
If PJ can get us to 9 regular season wins and/or knock off one of the top 20 teams in Nov I’m on board with backing up the truck. Sure it’s a gamble but probably one worth taking.
 

Bad Gopher

A Loner, A Rebel
Fleck has said it: he likes the midwest, and he and Heather like big city life. If he builds a contender, schools will court him, but if the U can pay him, I think he'll stay.
 
PJ will stick with our "Sleeping Giant", as he put it. Win and this administration will take care of his business. The new Prez knows what value successful sports programs brings to the "U"...... No need to go anywhere.

The Giant is waking from it's slumber.
I met the new MS State head coach, Joe Moorhead, at an event in Biloxi, during the summer last year. One of my son holds a couple of degrees from MS State. I took a picture of him with my son. He asked me if I wanted to be in the picture too and I said it might not go over to good with my Minnesota Alumni. Then he made some comment about 2017 beingy year zero for Coach Fleck. Coming from Penn State, Joe was very familiar with PJ. I told Joe that the beauty of taking over for Minnesota was that our football program, although it had won 9 games in 2016, was basically in survival mode. I told him that we will have patience with Coach Fleck. I then offered him the best of luck, but might have made some statement about MS State alumni not having much patience as he had inherided a winning program from a loved and respected head coach.

Joe is a really nice guy by the way. MS State is dealing with an academic cheating scandle; sound familiar. It's going to take a while to get it back on track. However, it does not surprise me that the alumni are already interested in making a change. Just stay away from PJ ya'll.
 
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