Royston patiently waiting for his chance to get on the field

Ask Minnesota head coach Tim Brewster about Kim Royston and a subtle smile creeps to his face. Ask him anything, Brewster will probably respond like he did Tuesday: âÄúI canâÄôt say enough about Kim.âÄù ItâÄôs certainly not for a lack of trying. Brewster will talk about RoystonâÄôs decision to return home after spending two years at Wisconsin; heâÄôll talk about RoystonâÄôs leadership; heâÄôll talk about RoystonâÄôs talent. And Royston hasnâÄôt even played a down as a member of the Gophers. Of course, itâÄôs because NCAA transfer rules prevent him from doing so, not because he lacks the skill, but what could have Brewster so excited about a player who has yet to appear on the field for Minnesota? Plenty. Brewster wants to recruit players that are committed to Minnesota in every wayâÄîthe team, the school and the state. To say Royston was committed to making it into a Gophers uniform is an understatement. Royston graduated from St. PaulâÄôs Cretin-Derham Hall in 2006 a highly sought after defensive back; ranked him the No. 5 recruit in Minnesota. Naturally, the Gophers came calling, but Royston chose border rival Wisconsin instead. After two years as a backup free safety for the Badgers, however, Royston was unsatisfied. He was unavailable for comment for this story, but Royston explained to the Pioneer Press in July that he felt as though he wasnâÄôt given a fair chance to snag a starting spot. âÄúI thought I did everything to start and it didn’t happen,âÄù Royston told the Pioneer Press. That wasnâÄôt the only reason: âÄúThere was a lot of stuff going on. We had different opinions on things, but that’s in the past.âÄù Royston wanted to transfer; the Badgers didnâÄôt make it easy. Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema said heâÄôd release Royston from his scholarship, as long as he didnâÄôt choose a school that appeared on the BadgersâÄô schedule during RoystonâÄôs remaining years of eligibility. But Royston had his mind set on Minnesota. By refusing to release him to a team appearing on WisconsinâÄôs schedule, Bielema blocked Royston from having contact with Brewster . It didnâÄôt matter. Under NCAA transfer rules, Royston would have to sit out a season before playing in a game for the Gophers . It didnâÄôt matter. Per Big Ten transfer rules, Royston would never be able to receive a scholarship to play at Minnesota. It didnâÄôt matter. âÄúHe could have went to a lot of different places on scholarship,âÄù Brewster said. But Royston didnâÄôt. He came home, and Brewster flashes that little smile. âÄúThere couldnâÄôt be a stronger statement about what it means to be a Gopher,âÄù Brewster said. Now that he is with the Gophers, Royston plays on the scout team in practice, preparing himself to take the field next year. Sophomore safety Kyle Theret said Royston is one of the best and hardest working scout team players. âÄúHe never takes a day off in practice and heâÄôs always trying to give us the best lift he can,âÄù Theret said. âÄúEverybody notices it.âÄù That includes Brewster. âÄúItâÄôs amazing what Kim does for us in practice,âÄù he said. âÄúHe plays quarterback some, receiver some, he plays defensive back. He simulates the opponentâÄôs best player and I just canâÄôt even tell you what a great kid he is.âÄù