Michigan running back Zach Charbonnet (24) carries for a touchdown against Minnesota in the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, in Minneapolis. (Mark Vancleave/Star Tribune via AP)

The Minnesota Golden Gopher football team got off to a rough start on Saturday as Michigan humbled them in front of a national audience with a 49-24 defeat.

The night got off to a fast start by the Gophers as they took advantage of a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on Michigan’s first drive. With the Wolverines backed up, Preston Jelen blocked the punt to set up a 14-yard touchdown from Tanner Morgan to Ko Kieft, to put Minnesota on the board.

Michigan had a swift response as Zack Charbonnet dashed 70-yards on the next offensive play to tie the game. On the following possession, Tanner Morgan was blasted on a pass attempt and the ball landed into the arms of Donovan Jeter for a 15-yard fumble return that gave Michigan a 14-7 lead.

The Gophers’ next drive sent Minnesota all the way to the Michigan goal line, but an illegal formation wiped out a Mohamed Ibrahim touchdown. Minnesota settled for a 29-yard field goal from Brock Walker, but Michael Barrett returned the kickoff 65 yards to set up a nine-yard touchdown from Joe Milton to Ben Mason to give the Wolverines a 21-10 lead after the first quarter.

After Ibrahim and Hassan Haskins exchanged touchdowns, the Gophers tried to keep their momentum by running a fake punt on fourth down. When the punt failed, Haskins ran in his second touchdown of the night to give Michigan a 35-17 lead at halftime.

The third quarter saw the Gophers (Ibrahim) and Wolverines (Hassan) exchange a pair of rushing touchdowns. Toward the end of the quarter, the Gophers drove down to the Michigan goal line, but Morgan overthrew a wide-open Ibrahim on fourth down to turn the ball over.

Michigan blew the game open in the fourth quarter getting a touchdown from Chris Evans to make up the final score.

Minnesota will look to get back on track when they travel to Maryland on Friday night.

Minnesota fell out of the AP Top 25 poll on Sunday, marking the first time they’ve been unranked in over a year.

In all, five teams from the Big Ten made the cut with Ohio State leading the way at No. 3. Wisconsin (No. 9), Michigan, Indiana (No. 17), and Penn State (No. 18) rounded out the conference’s representation in the rankings.


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