Weber has solid hold at QB spot

Without a doubt, sophomore quarterback Adam Weber cemented his place atop the Gophers depth chart after his performance Friday night at Minnesota’s annual spring game.

up next

Northern Illinois
what: Men’s tennis
when: Time TBA, August 30
where: Metrodome

The Mounds View graduate completed 10 of his 14 pass attempts for 65 yards.

He also contributed on both of the Gophers’ touchdowns Friday night – a fourth-and-goal bootleg run in the second quarter and a 13-yard pass to sophomore wide-out Ralph Spry in the third.

Weber’s leadership, which has been a focus all spring, crept out following the game as the quarterback was not satisfied with the offense.

“If anyone says they are satisfied on how we competed today, they aren’t telling the story. We are pretty far behind in practice, but that is what fall camp and the summer is for,” Weber said. “We are going to continue getting better and when August 30th comes around, we are going to be a pretty good team.”

While Weber will most likely be on the field that day against Northern Illinois, who will back him up has yet to be set in stone.

Redshirt freshman Clint Brewster was somewhat mediocre Friday – going 4-for-8 for 37 yards.

The J.K. Mullen graduate started off shaky when his first pass was nearly picked off and his second attempt was a 34-yard return by fifth-year senior linebacker Kevin Mannion.

Brewster improved on his next drive though and was able to bring the Gophers into field goal range.

“I was a little nervous at first, but I started to settle down after a few deep breaths,” Clint Brewster said. “I still need a ton of work: knowing the protections and reading the defense.”

Fifth-year seniors Tony Mortensen and Mike Maciejowski both saw somewhat less action in the spring game – completing 2-of-5 and 2-of-4, respectively.

Mortensen showed some ability on the ground however – he led all quarterbacks with 27 rushing yards on five carries.

“There’s good competition there,” coach Tim Brewster said. “I think all of them did some things (Friday) that were good.”

Junior transfer David Pittman didn’t even dress after straining a hamstring during the week, according to Brewster.

Brewster said Pittman was very disappointed about missing the game and his frustration showed Friday as he kept his distance from the rest of the team for most of the game.

Kicking himself

Last year as a junior, Joel Monroe came in to replace an unreliable Jason Giannini.

Friday night as a fifth-year kicker, Monroe looked like the one needing a stand-in after he went 0-for-3 on field goals.

Monroe started the first half by missing a pair of 38-yard field goals. His third attempt, a 52-yard boot at the end of the first half, barely made it to the endzone.

“Obviously, we need to make those field goals and its disappointing when you don’t,” Brewster said. “Joel Monroe is a good kicker, and I’m not down on him at all.”

A new Sherels in town

Junior defensive back Marcus Sherels showed he is just as talented chasing down the opposition as he is running away from them.

After being moved from receiver to corner for the spring, Sherels was one of several defensive highlights for a team that struggled there last season.

The Rochester native recovered a pair of fumbles on the game’s first two drives and made a total of three tackles (two solo, one assisted).

“Marcus is really stepping up and playing extremely well at corner,” Brewster said. “The move that we made taking Marcus from receiver to corner is really, I think, going to be beneficial to our football team.”

Sherels, who said the position change was just a minor adjustment, also railed off long returns for Minnesota – a 21-yard punt return and a 55-yard kickoff return.

Houston takes Barber

The Houston Texans selected former Gophers safety Dominic Barber as the team’s sixth round draft pick (173rd overall) on Sunday.

Barber was named second team All-Big Ten last year after leading the Gophers defense with 100 tackles.

He earned the Bronko Nagurski Award as Minnesota’s most valuable player and the Carl Eller Award – given to the team’s top defensive player.

Barber’s brother and former Minnesota running back Marion Barber III currently plays for the Dallas Cowboys.