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QB Cole Kramer to Enroll Early at U

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August 20, 2018


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Quarterback Cole Kramer told Sports Headliners he has the academic credits to graduate early from Eden Prairie High School and he has finalized plans to start classes in January at the University of Minnesota.

Eden Prairie coach Mike Grant learned of the news last week. “Well, I think it’s a good idea for a quarterback to do it,” Grant said. “Him and I have talked about trying to do that, and get in there early. Then he goes through a spring practice, and that’s beneficial.”

Cole will be able to sign paper work for his scholarship in December, along with other high school football players throughout the country. He was the first player in Minnesota’s 2019 football recruiting class to verbally commit.

Cole drew interest from Iowa and Michigan State before committing to the Golden Gophers. Is there a possibility he will flip his verbal commitment and not attend Minnesota? What circumstances could cause that to happen?

Cole Kramer

“Nothing. I am committed fully to the Gophers, and that’s where my heart is and that’s where I will stay,” Cole said.

What if the Gophers had a dreadful record in 2018? “I don’t care what will happen (with the record) this year,” Cole said. “I love the coaches. I love everything that they’re doing. They’re going in the right place (direction). With what coach (P.J.) Fleck did with Western Michigan, how he went from a poor season all the way to 13-0, I totally believe we can do that, too.”

Other schools have backed away from pursuing the Eden Prairie senior who is “100 percent” on Minnesota. “They (other schools) kind of know I am set in stone with the Gophers,” Cole said.

Cole has “always known” he wanted Minnesota. He sees the U as the whole package for him—his hometown school, with an “unbelievable coach” in Fleck, a program moving upward and one that is showcasing new facilities. And, of course, there are his family ties with the Gophers and the impact the U had on their lives.

Grandfather Tom Moe played end for the Gophers and was team MVP in 1959. He also was an outstanding hitter on the 1960 national championship Minnesota baseball team. He became a prominent attorney in Minneapolis and was named interim athletic director at his alma mater from 1999-2002.

Tom’s son Mike Moe was a quarterback for the Gophers in the 1980s. Tom’s daughter Jennie played tennis at the U from 1989-1992 and made all-conference. Her husband, Bob Coughlin, played football for Minnesota from 1986-1990. The two are the parents of Carter Coughlin, Minnesota’s starting defensive end from Eden Prairie who is a cousin of Cole.

Tom’s daughter Jackie and her husband Steve are the parents of Cole. Jackie, like her sister Jennie, was a great tennis player at Edina High School and went on to play collegiately at Texas where she was an All-American and part of the 1993 national championship team.

“I think Fleck made a great decision (recruiting Cole) with the pedigree and the history of that family, the Moe family,” Grant said. “…I’ve known the Moe family for 40 years, and they’ve been nothing but champions and winners. So it was a great decision to bring another of the Moe clan in under the Gopher umbrella.”

Cole has been Eden Prairie’s starting quarterback since the third game of his sophomore season. “I don’t think he has any weaknesses,” Grant said. “He’s got a great arm. He’s a very, very good athlete.

“What you see now is the command and leadership of the huddle. When he was a sophomore, he wasn’t the leader of our team and even last year there were seniors that probably were (more of) the leaders. …”

Although Cole has thrown about 250 career passes, none have been intercepted. He said Grant calls the plays and he trusts his coach’s judgment. He credited Grant for avoiding interceptions.

Cole is 6-foot-1 and about 190 pounds. He has worked since last season to become stronger. He is considered a “dual-threat” quarterback and he has 4.6 time in the 40- yard dash. He is ranked as a three-star QB by 247Sports and along with Jacob Clark from Texas is one of two quarterbacks who have verbally committed to the Gophers for 2019.

Grant has won 11 state titles at Eden Prairie. Part of the success formula has been great quarterbacks, including Jason Kapsner who went on to Michigan. Can Cole be the best Eagles QB to play for Grant?

“I don’t know but the standard is pretty high,” the coach said. “You can’t even claim to be the best unless you’ve won two state titles and been back-to-back undefeated.”

Well, Cole’s Eagles lost the state title game in 2016 but they won it last year with an unbeaten team, 13-0. Cole said he is “super excited” to get a second straight 6A state championship.

Making this fall even sweeter could be throwing passes to his brother Cade, just a sophomore who is trying to establish a roster spot. Cole offered a promising scouting report.

“He’s probably got the best hands I’ve ever thrown to, no matter what level it is. I’ve rarely seen him drop a pass.”

Wouldn’t that be something if the two brothers shared success this fall and then in a couple of years had some big moments together in Dinkytown? We already know Cole is going to arrive there in just a few months.

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David Shama

David Shama is a former sports editor and columnist with local publications. His writing and reporting experiences include covering the Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Gophers. Shama’s career experiences also include sports marketing. He is the former Marketing Director of the Minnesota North Stars of the NHL. He is also the former Marketing Director of the United States Tennis Association’s Northern Section. A native of Minneapolis, Shama has been part of the community his entire life. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota where he majored in journalism. He also has a Master’s degree in education from the University of St. Thomas. He was a member of the Governor’s NBA’s Task Force to help create interest in bringing pro basketball to town in the 1980s.

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