For the second consecutive time, Venric Mark busted a huge kickoff return for the Wildcats, this time taking the ball to the Minnesota 43-yard line. After converting one first down on a 4th-and-1, Northwestern found themselves looking at 4th-and-7 from the Minnesota 28. No problem for Dan Persa and company, however, as he found a wide open Demetrius Fields behind the Minnesota defense for a 28-yard touchdown pass. The extra point gave the Wildcats a 14-7 lead with 8:13 remaining in the first quarter of play.
If the Gophers don't do something to shore up their kickoff coverage, the Wildcats are going to have short fields all day. The Gophers defense is suspect at the best of times, and if Northwestern doesn't even have to drive half the field to score, it's going to be a long day for Jerry Kill's squad.
As it stands now, the Minnesota Golden Gophers trail the Northwestern Wildcats, 14-7, with a little more than eight minutes remaining in the first quarter of play.