Arguably the strongest position for the Gophers entering the 2011 season is their linebacking corps. Keanon Cooper, Gary Tinsley, and Mike Rallis are going to be key componsents of a defense that had trouble stopping people in 2010. And 2009. And 2008…and so on.
And although none of the mshowed up on the Gophers injury report, two of their backups will not play, along with an offensive lineman.
Brendan Beal and Aaron Hill will not suit up on Saturday. Beal has a knee injury that was not disclosed, and coach Kill did not discuss the severity of it. Hill has not practiced for a week because of a hmstring injury, although are indications are it is getting better. Ryan Grant will replace Beal and backup Tinsley, and Joey Balthazor will step in for Hill and backup up Cooper.
Offensive tackle Josh Campion will not play, either. He is still suffering from the after affects of a concussion.