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Updated: 16 min 6 sec ago

Johnny Love's Preakness handicap

Fri, 05/15/2015 - 13:15
Categories: Local

Bobby Bell reaches his dream

Fri, 05/15/2015 - 13:04
Former Gopher football player and pro football star Bobby Bell finally gets his college diploma at age 74.
Categories: Local

Vikings gain athleticism with TE MyCole Pruitt

Fri, 05/15/2015 - 12:59
Before the Vikings selected a wide receiver in the 2015 NFL Draft, a position many thought the team would address during the first three rounds, they picked a tight end. And it wasn’t even the local product, Gophers tight end Maxx Williams (who went 55th overall to the Ravens in the second round). The Vikings went to general manager Rick Spielman’s alma mater, Southern Illinois, to take MyCole Pruitt with the 143rd overall pick in the fifth round. Offensive coordinator Norv Turner’s offense thrives with athletic tight ends, and Pruitt seems to fit the mold despite playing on the Football Championship Subdivision level. “[Turner] sees guys that remind him of guys in the past,” Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said. “Norv was pretty adamant throughout the draft about this is a guy that we’re really intrigued with. He runs 4.5 (second 40-yard dash), has a chance to be a good tight end and it’s really important for the tight ends in our offense, as you know. He had a lot of say on that one.” Former tight ends in Turner’s past over the last few years include Antonio Gates, a future Hall of Famer, during his tenure as the Chargers head coach and tight end Jordan Cameron when Turner served as the Browns offensive coordinator for a season. The Vikings didn’t exactly see the position utilized to its full potential last season with Kyle Rudolph playing just nine games due to injuries. With Rudolph’s absence, the team had to rely on two tight ends that lacked the other player’s strengths. Rhett Ellison served as a good blocker, but he’s not a threat in the passing game, while Chase Ford is the exact opposite. In comes Pruitt, who was a two-time first team FCS All-America selection over the last two seasons and led all Division I tight ends with 81 catches, 861 yards and 13 touchdowns. He was capable of not just playing on the line of scrimmage, possessing the tools to potentially become a complete tight end as a blocker, but Spielman said he can play in the slot as well. “He has a lot of the traits that we’re looking for, especially in Norv Turner’s offense, being able to do multiple things,” Spielman said. “He has very good hands, he’s aggressive as a blocker, and Norv, as we sat there and talked about him through the draft meetings, felt that we can do a lot of different things with him and play him at a lot of different positions.” It was considered a weak tight end class, but it’s clear that Spielman and Zimmer trusted Turner’s vision for what Pruitt could do in this offense. Because having two athletic, well-rounded tight ends is better than one. We’ll see if Pruitt can actually develop into that player in the NFL over the next few years.
Categories: Local

Twins minor-league update: Berrios, Sano, Polanco, Kepler

Fri, 05/15/2015 - 12:58
Jose Berrios' feel for his change up was one thing the Twins liked about him when they drafted him in 2012. And his ability to change speeds has been evident.
Categories: Local

My Outdoor Life: Trampled by Turtles' Dave Simonett and the natural world

Fri, 05/15/2015 - 06:35
The Trampled by Turtles frontman can point to a life outdoors and his upbringing as inspirations.
Categories: Local

Kampf, Heath win TC 1 Mile races

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 22:19
Categories: Local

Wolves to meet with Tyus Jones on Friday

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 22:10
At the NBA combine, he says he decided to turn pro now because it “was the best time for me.”
Categories: Local

Seniors lifted Gophers softball to lofty heights

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 21:31
The six seniors have won 157 games over four seasons, but want a World Series berth.
Categories: Local

Canterbury Park purses to reach $14M over 70-day racing meet

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 21:11
Officials anticipate that wagering could surpass last season’s total of $37M at the Shakopee racetrack.
Categories: Local

A tale of two Twins deals: Joe Mauer vs. Torii Hunter

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 21:04
Who has been a better value?  The answer may surprise you.
Categories: Local

Proposed changes to 'body-grip' traps have not gained traction

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 20:33
Proponents want to reduce the chance of their hunting dogs being harmed by accident.
Categories: Local

On graduation day, Bobby Bell extends thanks to the U of M

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 18:26
Bobby Bell, 74, wore his cap and gown for Thursday's graduation ceremony at Mariucci Arena.
Categories: Local

A house afloat on water: Adventure and friendship on Rainy Lake

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 17:54
A houseboat in Voyageurs National Park got friends clear of the daily grind.
Categories: Local

Favre: What Brady did is not 'cheating'

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 16:31
Brett Favre weighed in on Fox News' "On the Record with Greta Van Susteren" Wednesday night.
Categories: Local

Robison suffers pectoral injury while working out at Winter Park

Thu, 05/14/2015 - 16:13
Vikings defensive end Brian Robison suffered a pectoral injury while working out at Winter Park today,  league sources confirmed. Robison said in a text message that “I’ll be OK,” but didn’t elaborate on the extent of the injury. Medical tests were pending. The Vikings through a spokesperson declined comment on the injury. Robison has been a full-time starter for the Vikings the past four seasons, playing and starting in 63 of a possible 64 games. The 32-year-old started every game in 2014, Mike Zimmer’s first season as coach, but he had just 4.5 sacks and 24 tackles, his lowest totals since becoming a starter in 2011. The Vikings have used a third-round pick in each of the past two drafts on defensive ends. In 2014, they selected Scott Crichton to back up Robison at left end. He played sparingly as a rookie, though. Earlier this month, they drafted Danielle Hunter, a speed-rushing right end, in the third round, too. The Vikings also have a trio of unproven defensive ends on their 90-man roster in Leon Mackey, Caesar Rayford and Justin Trattou. FOX Sports first reported that Robison had suffered a pectoral injury.
Categories: Local

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