Glen Mason is in his 10th season as University of Minnesota football coach. The Gophers are more than half way through their 12 game schedule (four non-conference games and, as usual, eight Big Ten Conference games). Following Saturday’s 48-12 loss to Wisconsin, the Gophers are 0-4 in the conference and 2-5 overall.
Dating back to last season, Minnesota has the second longest losing streak in the Big Ten. The Gophers have lost five consecutive conference games while Michigan State has lost six straight. Minnesota is 2-7 in its last nine conference games and is in last place in the Big Ten.
Mason’s career record at Minnesota is 60 wins, 55 losses. He has won 29 conference games and lost 47. His non-conference record (including bowl games where he is 3-3) is 30 wins, nine losses.
In the Big Ten Mason has 11 conference road wins in nine and one-half seasons. He has never won in Madison, the site of Saturday’s loss. The scores in Madison: 48-12, 38-14, 49-31, 41-20 and 26-7.
During the Mason era Minnesota’s highest finish in the conference standings has been fourth (three times). The other finishes are 10th, ninth, eighth and seventh (three times). The last five seasons the Gophers’ conference finishes have been 10th, seventh, fourth, eighth and seventh again.
The 30-9 non-conference record has come against these schools: Hawaii, Iowa State, Memphis, Houston, Arkansas State, Ohio, Louisiana-Monroe, Illinois State, Baylor, Toledo, Louisiana-Lafayette, Murray State, Southwest Texas State, Buffalo, Tulsa, Troy State, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Kent State, California and Temple, plus bowl opponents Oregon, North Carolina State, Arkansas, Alabama and Virginia.
Iowa and Wisconsin are the conference schools in closest geographic proximity to Minnesota. Iowa has won two of the last four conference championships and participated in four consecutive major bowl games including the Orange Bowl. (The Gophers haven’t defeated Iowa since 2000 and have lost their last three games in Iowa City by a combined score of 134 to 74). Wisconsin won Big Ten titles in 1998 and 1999 and won two Rose Bowls following those seasons.
Northwestern, historically a subject of college football ridicule, won a conference championship in 2000. In 1995 and 1996 the “Mildcats” were also Big Ten champions.
To finish above .500 for the season (7-5) the Gophers would need to win all of their remaining games including in Columbus against No. 1 ranked Ohio State.Comments Welcome