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Derrick Wells Earns National Award For Gophers

On the heels of his performance in the Minnesota Golden Gophers' overtime win over the UNLV Rebels, sophomore safety Derrick Wells has been named the Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week by the Football Writers Association of America.

Wells intercepted two passes in Thursday night's victory, the second ending UNLV's possession in the third overtime period and setting up Minnesota's game-winning field goal. The safety added two pass breakups and eight tackles, all in his first collegiate start.

By winning the award, Wells earns admission to the Bronco Nagurski Award watch list, which is given to the nation's top defensive player and named for Minnesota legend Bronco Nagurski. No Gopher has won the award since its inception in 1993, and no Minnesota defender was included on the preseason watch list.

For all things Golden Gopher, check out The Daily Gopher. Stay here at SB Nation Minnesota for more coverage of Minnesota football, and SB Nation's college football hub has all the news and analysis you need from around the NCAA.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.