Gophers coach Fleck reviews meltdown at Northwestern and looks ahead to homecoming game vs. Louisiana

(KSTP) – Gophers football coach P.J. Fleck accepted blame on Monday, two days after his team blew a 21 point second half lead Saturday at Northwestern.

“It’s 100% on my shoulders, as I’m the head football coach,” Fleck said. “Everything runs through me. And I don’t just say that guys, to say that, or to get out of questions. I don’t ever say that. Because I go back and look at every decision of head coach makes. And then if it works great, you never hear about it. It doesn’t work. Okay, why didn’t it work?”

Northwestern scored two touchdowns early in the fourth quarter to pull within seven. The Wildcats tied it in the closing seconds of regulation when Henning caught an 11-yard TD, and came away with their second win in three games after losing 12 in a row. QB Ben Bryant threw a 25-yard touchdown to Charlie Mangieri in overtime to seal the win.

“You’re up 31-10, and the one drive, they go three passes in a row and score. That one is completely unacceptable. But then on offense, we have plenty of opportunities to get first downs to control the clock, manage the game, and still score, and we don’t.

We have special teams that gets affected by that as a ball goes into the end zone, so instead they had to go 80 with no timeouts instead of 99-yards. We didn’t execute it well enough.

So every single thing on offense, defense and special teams, there was something from it. That answered the question of “why” all packed within this one quarter.”

The Gophers will look to end their two-game losing streak when they host Louisiana on Saturday for Homecoming.

One injury concern off the loss vs. the Wildcats: Freshman RB Darius Taylor left early with an undisclosed injury. Fleck said we’ll know his status for Saturday two hours prior to kickoff when the injury report is released.