Fans brave the cold hoping for warm bowl game for the Gophers

The Gophers beat Northwestern Saturday. Most importantly, it's the eighth win and the third time in four years they've won eight games. Gopher football hasn’t put together a streak like that in more than 100 years.

Gopher fans have been spoiled by warm weather this season, but not this Saturday against Northwestern. It seemed only the hardiest of fans showed up at TCF Bank Stadium to cheer the Gophers on to another win.

That might be one reason despite the Gophers' relative success this season. There were a lot of empty seats at TCF Bank Stadium. The balmy temperatures of just two weeks ago replaced by winter-like chill.

“Exactly, exactly! I had a nephew and a grand-nephew come up from Chicago for the Northwestern game, and it's the coldest day of the year!” Gopher fan Mark Erickson said.

“We did have to evaluate our clothing. We had to think hmmm what is going to keep us warm?” Gopher fan Gretchen Foster said.

Maybe thoughts of Florida or California during New Year's week?

“The season's been pretty decent, pretty good,” Erickson said.

Despite some tough losses, the Gophers still have a chance to match their best win total since 2003 and spend New Year's week somewhere nice and warm.

“It's a good time to be here. It's fun. It's authentic. It's a great time,” Foster said.

A great time for a program that fans we spoke with say is on the right track.

“Think we're going to be better next year,” Erickson said.

“It's really about being brick by brick, and building this football community and showing up whether win or lose, we are Gopher fans and I think's that's what it about,” Gopher fan Ryan Bisson said.

Many Gophers hope to end the season on a high note against the tough Wisconsin Badgers over in Madison.