College football: Gophers top Western Ill.
David Cobb and Rodrick Williams Jr. each rushed for two touchdowns and the host Golden Gophers overcame the loss of head coach Jerry Kill to an epileptic seizure at halftime to defeat the Leathernecks.
Freshman quarterback Mitch Leidner, who entered the game in the second quarter when starter Philip Nelson departed with a left hamstring injury, completed 7-of-8 passes for 105 yards for Minnesota (3-0), which trailed 12-7 late in the third quarter before scoring three touchdowns over a span of 14 offensive plays.
Trenton Norvell completed 11-of-23 passes for 162 yards and two touchdowns for Western Illinois (2-1), including a 11-yarder to Lance Lenoir early in the third quarter to give the Leathernecks their final lead of the game.
Minnesota, taking advantage of a 17-yard punt by Nathan Knuffman, came back to take the lead for a good on Cobb’s 2-yard run with 1:22 remaining in the third quarter. Leidner then connected with Logan Hutton for a two-point conversion to make it 15-12.
Cobb added his second touchdown on a 3-yard run early in the fourth quarter, and Williams Jr. sealed the win a few minutes later with a 37-yard run following a 26-yard punt return by KJ Maye.
GAME NOTEBOOK: According to the Big Ten Network, it was the third time Kill had suffered a seizure during a game in three seasons as head coach of the Gophers. ... David Benedict, the deputy athletic director forMinnesota, said Kill, who was carted off the field at halftime, was resting comfortably in a local area hospital. ...Minnesota, which didn’t get called for a penalty until midway through the fourth quarter, has been flagged just seven times in three games this season.