Conor Rhoda named Gophers starting quarterback

- Conor Rhoda will be the one and only starting quarterback for the Gophers when Middle Tennessee visits Minnesota this Saturday. Rhoda, a senior, and redshirt sophomore Demry Croft shared the role of QB1 and split series in the Gophers’ first two games against Buffalo and Oregon State.

Gophers head coach P.J. Fleck said Rhoda has “separated himself” in his leadership of the team, and called his quarterback “an incredible story.”

Rhoda graduated last December and was looking to move on from the Gophers, but he decided to return for a fifth season after meeting with Fleck.

"I was about a week away from applying for jobs. I was looking into medical sales,” Rhoda said. “It is a really great feeling. It brings everything I have gone through the past five years full circle."

“He will be able to tell his grandkids one day about never giving up,” Fleck said. “Keep rowing the boat."

Rhoda is 19 of 28 passing for 334 yards, two touchdowns and one interception over those two games. Croft is 7 of 12 passing with no touchdowns and no interceptions, but added a 64-yard sprint for a rushing touchdown to cap a 48-14 Gophers win at Oregon State.

Fleck said Croft will not play against Middle Tennessee State, but wouldn’t reveal who would serve as the backup to Rhoda.

"We will see,” Fleck said. “The culture is the first thing behind everything that we do."

Watch Fox 9 Gopher Pregame at 8:30 a.m. Saturday on Fox 9.

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