Gophers Pregame Show on FOX 9: Minnesota opens Big Ten play at Michigan State

The University of Minnesota football team opens the Big Ten season on Saturday at Michigan State, a 2:30 p.m. kickoff on Big Ten Network.

Before the game, watch the Gophers Pregame Show on FOX 9 with Pierre Noujiam, Gophers’ analyst Ron Johnson and KFAN sideline reporter Justin Gaard from 9-10 a.m. You can also watch on and streaming live in the player above. 

The Gophers take a 3-0 record to East Lansing after getting a 49-7 blowout win over Colorado to end the non-conference season. The Gophers out-scored New Mexico State, Western Illinois and Colorado by a combined 149-17, and the starting defense has allowed just three points through three games.

Minnesota is without top receiver Chris Autman-Bell for the rest of the season. Autman-Bell had surgery on Wednesday after suffering a lower right leg injury against Colorado. His absence means bigger roles for Dylan Wright, Michael Brown-Stephens, Brevyn Spann-Ford and Daniel Jackson going forward. Brown Stephens joined the PJ Fleck Show earlier this week to talk about the season going forward without Autman-Bell.

The Gophers will likely also lean on Mo Ibrahim, who leads the nation in rushing through three games, averaging 154.7 yards per game. He’s also got seven rushing touchdowns, and tied Darrell Thompson’s program record of 40 last Saturday, doing so in 13 fewer games than Thompson.

The Spartans are coming off a 39-28 loss at Washington, which dropped them out of the top-25 rankings for the first time this season.

Fleck enters Saturday’s game 21-22 in Big Ten play over five seasons. A win over Michigan State in East Lansing would put the Gophers on the national stage as it relates to contending for the Big Ten West.