Mo Ibrahim moved around pretty well on Saturday, considering what he went through the previous 10 days.
The Minnesota Golden Gophers star running back — out for the season after surgery on a lower-left leg injury sustained in the loss to Ohio State on Sept. 2 — zoomed around with the aid of a scooter to stay off his new bright green cast covered with well wishes. He went to midfield as the Gophers' coin-toss captain, worked the sideline to encourage teammates and coached up tailbacks.
Minnesota running game, meanwhile, picked up where they left off with Ibrahim, relying on one guy. Trey Potts produced 34 carries for 178 yards and two touchdowns in the 31-26 win over Miami of Ohio at Huntington Bank Stadium.
Potts nearly eclipsed what he had done total in eight previous career games (36 carries for 205 yards and 2 TDs), and that workload might hurt later.
“I definitely feel it a little bit,” Potts said. “It is what it is, and I’m ready to keep going.”
The other backups tailbacks only got a tiny share of the workload: Cam Wiley had three carries for 0 yards, and Bryce Williams had two for minus-2.
Ibrahim was in Potts ear on the sideline. “After every drive, he would give me a couple of pointers, definitely Mo and (running back coach Kenni Burns),” Potts said. “They are right there on my hip and we like to discuss whatever I see out there on the field, but they are just keeping it a positive mindset with me and just let me go out there and make some plays.”
Second WR out
Minnesota’s top receiver Chris Autman-Bell missed a second straight game Saturday and emerging wideout Dylan Wright left the game after taking a hit on a route across the middle. He walked off the field without a noticeable impact.
“I was told (the doctors) were going to hold him out,” Fleck said. “He’s going to be OK, but they were going to hold him out.”
Autman-Bell warmed up to play against the RedHawks, but before the game changed out of pads and watched the game from the sideline. “CrAB” has returned to practice after suffering an ankle injury on Aug. 12 and missed the loss to the Buckeyes.
Without two of their top three, Daniel Jackson had a team-high four receptions for 30 yards and his first career touchdown.
New kicker Matthew Trickett easily made a 50-yard field goal to extend Minnesota’s lead to 31-20 in the fourth quarter. It was the Kent State transfer’s first 50-yard boot and Minnesota's first from that range since Emmit Carpenter against Fresno State on Sept. 8, 2018.
“Definitely special,” Trickett said. “It just proves all the work that we put in on special teams, with (Holder Mark) Crawford and (snapper Brady Weeks).
Safety Jordan Howden (thigh) practiced this week and warmed up, but Michael Dixon got the start and had seven tackles. … True freshman cornerback Justin Walley had a big hit on a kickoff, but left the game with a suspected head injury. … Linebacker Mariano Sori-Marin again led Minnesota in tackles, with 10, including 1.5 for lost yards and a pass breakup. … Minnesota has not registered a sack for a second-straight game. … Attendance was announced at 43,372. … Minnesota has now won 20 straight nonconference games dating back to 2015.