Gophers defense focused on safer tackling, and fewer flags


The moniker caught from peewee to highschool soccer, and he introduced it with him to Minnesota in 2013. The Gophers security has now constructed a reputation for himself on the sector, too.

McGhee, a senior projected to start out this season, labored his method from redshirt to backup in 2014-15 and as much as half-time starter final season, when he and the Gophers protection turned linked to a spike in concentrating on penalties towards them.

Minnesota had a Huge Ten-main eight concentrating on calls, with McGhee flagged 3 times. After calls that pressured Illinois and Northwestern large receivers to exit these video games, he was ejected for concentrating on within the second half of the 17-12 Vacation Bowl victory over Washington State. By rule, he should sit out the primary half of the Gophers’ season opener Thursday towards Buffalo at TCF Financial institution Stadium.

“Duke” does not consider there’s something fallacious together with his intent.

“In case you ever meet me off the sector, you already know that I am a very nice man,” McGhee stated. “I’m a bodily participant. So far as concentrating on, I feel it is an awesome rule to include in school soccer, particularly once you take a look at the nicely-being of gamers. I help the rule one hundred pc.”

Since concentrating on was launched in 2008 and ejections have been added in 2013, the variety of calls final season elevated to probably the most ever throughout Soccer Bowl Subdivision. The general variety of calls went from fifty five in 2013 to 195 final season. Concentrating on addresses participant security for hits from the helmet, shoulder and arms to convey forcible contact on the head or neck space of an opponent.

“(Minnesota) had eight within the season and all of them have been right,” Invoice Carollo, the Huge Ten’s coordinator of soccer officers, stated on the convention’s media days in July.

The variety of overturned concentrating on calls has elevated from 24 in 2013 to fifty one in 2016. In 2015, Carollo regretted one reversed name on the expense of quarterback Mitch Leidner and the Gophers of their 28-14 loss at Ohio State. This yr, he agreed with all calls involving Minnesota, including, “one or two of them have been shut.”

“We have taken away the large hits, the actual harmful performs, however … nonetheless with the numbers going up, we will not loosen up and assume that we have got this drawback solved as a result of we’re very involved concerning the concentrating on points,” Carollo stated.

After Gophers gamers took a break to eat popsicles throughout their open follow Aug. 5, coach P.J. Fleck gathered them for a midfield seminar on concentrating on prevention, and the instruction was on correct method. The message was along with…



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