Scores

Final

San Jose State 24

(1-2, 0-2 away)

Minnesota 43

(4-0, 3-0 home)

Coverage: ESPN2

12:00 PM ET, September 21, 2013

TCF Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, MN

1 2 3 4 T
SJSU 0 17 0 724
MINN 7 13 9 1443

Top Performers

Passing: D. Fales (SJSU) - 439 YDS, 3 TD, 2 INT

Rushing: M. Leidner (MINN) - 24 CAR, 151 YDS, 4 TD

Receiving: C. Jones (SJSU) - 7 REC, 197 YDS, 3 TD

Mitch Leidner boosts Minnesota to win over SJSU

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- Quarterback Mitch Leidner rushed for 151 yards and four touchdowns to lift Minnesota to a 43-24 victory over San Jose State on Saturday.

Leidner was filling in for injured starter Philip Nelson, who was out with a bad hamstring. He also passed for 71 yards as the Golden Gophers improved to 4-0. Gophers coach Jerry Kill returned to the sideline a week after missing the second half because of an epileptic seizure and made it through the game without incident.

David Fales threw for 439 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions for San Jose State (1-2). Chandler Jones had seven catches for 197 yards and three touchdowns for the Spartans, who were missing top receiver Noah Grigsby with a knee injury.

David Cobb rushed for 125 yards and two touchdowns and the Gophers dominated the time of possession 40:38-18:58 to grind Fales and the high-flying Spartans into submission.

At 6-foot-4 and nearly 240 pounds, Leidner was more of the classic drop-back passer at Lakeville South High School in suburban Minneapolis, but Kill has said that the redshirt freshman is deceptively athletic. Leidner proved that point on Saturday, using his 4.6 speed to break several big runs and his impressive size to bull over tacklers and plunge into the end zone.

After stubbing their toe on the opening drive and missing a 51-yard field goal try, the Gophers stuffed San Jose State on fourth-and-1 from the 15 before grinding out a 10-play drive on the ground to take the lead. Leidner capped the drive with a read option, faking a handoff and cruising untouched 10 yards for the touchdown.

Fales, who some scouts project as a first-round draft pick next spring, showed off that NFL arm all afternoon, never more so than on a perfectly placed deep ball over Jones' right shoulder for a 76-yard touchdown pass. It was effortless, just a flick of the wrist sent the ball whistling right over cornerback Derrick Wells' outstretched arms to make it 13-10.

His second touchdown of the day, a 32-yard strike to Jones on a seam route gave Fales 294 yards passing in the first half. The Spartans trailed 20-17 at half, but probably could have had the lead were it not for a pair of curious calls deep in Gophers territory.

The Spartans twice had third-and-5 or shorter inside the Minnesota 20 in the first half, but each time called for a running play that failed to get the first down.

The magic started to fade in the second half when Fales tried to squeeze a pass to Jabari Carr into a tight window. The ball deflected into the air and Aaron Hill made a nifty one-handed interception to give the Gophers the ball at the Minnesota 12.

Leidner scored from 1 yard out three plays later for a 26-17 lead, and the Gophers never looked back.

Spartans kicker Harrison Waid was ejected in the fourth quarter after a confrontation with Wells on an onside kick.

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Team Stat Comparison

 
SJSU
MINN
1st Downs1625
Total Yards486424
Passing43971
Rushing47353
Penalties9-983-40
3rd Down Conversions1-97-13
4th Down Conversions2-42-2
Turnovers30
Possession18:5841:02

Passing Leaders

San Jose StateC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Fales22/3543912.532
MinnesotaC/ATTYDSAVGTDINT
Leidner5/12715.900

Rushing Leaders

San Jose StateCARYDSAVGTDLG
Simpson11292.6018
Crawley4184.508
MinnesotaCARYDSAVGTDLG
Leidner241516.3427
Cobb251255.0235

Receiving Leaders

San Jose StateRECYDSAVGTDLG
Jones719728.1376
Freeman28140.5042
MinnesotaRECYDSAVGTDLG
Maye23919.5037
Fruechte12222.0022

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERSJSUMINN
TD04:56Mitch Leidner 10 Yd Run (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 07
SECOND QUARTERSJSUMINN
FG14:26Austin Lopez 30 Yd 37
TD08:23Mitch Leidner 1 Yd Run (Pat Failed) 313
TD06:52Chandler Jones 76 Yd Pass From David Fales (Austin Lopez Kick) 1013
TD03:07David Cobb 1 Yd Run (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 1020
TD01:08Chandler Jones 32 Yd Pass From David Fales (Austin Lopez Kick) 1720
THIRD QUARTERSJSUMINN
TD11:59Mitch Leidner 1 Yd Run (Pat Blocked) 1726
FG06:11Chris Hawthorne 22 Yd 1729
FOURTH QUARTERSJSUMINN
TD14:52Mitch Leidner 1 Yd Run (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 1736
TD07:53David Cobb 1 Yd Run (Chris Hawthorne Kick) 1743
TD05:37Chandler Jones 28 Yd Pass From David Fales (Austin Lopez Kick) 2443

Research Notes

Minnesota quarterback Mitch Leidner has four rushing touchdowns today. He's the first FBS quarterback with four rushing touchdowns in a game this season.

ESPN Stats & Information