Gophers Hold Annual Banquet
The University of Minnesota football team and the Goal Line Club celebrated the 2014 regular season at the annual Golden Gopher Football Banquet on Sunday afternoon at the Hilton Minneapolis.
The highlight of the program was the announcement of the team's annual awards. Senior David Cobb was honored with the Bronko Nagurski Award, which is given annually to the team's most valuable player.
Cobb also received the newly renamed Bob McNamara Offensive Back of the Year and the Bruce Smith Award (outstanding offensive player).
Cobb’s cousin and teammate Damien Wilson was honored with the Carl Eller Award, as the team’s most Outstanding Defensive Player and was also named Linebacker of the Year.
Briean Boddy-Calhoun was named the Defensive Back of the Year and also received the Gary Tinsley Award for best embracing the underdog persona of Gary Tinsley, who played for the Gophers from 2008-11 and passed away in April 2012.
Mitch Leidner was feted with the Neil Fredenburg Award (courage and love of the game), while Donnell Kirkwood received the Paul Giel Award (unselfishness and most concern for Minnesota).
Jon Christenson was honored with the Butch Nast Award (competitive on the field and in the classroom) and Luke McAvoy received the Tony Dungy Character and Community Service Award (great character on and off the field)
Punter Peter Mortell repeated as the Bobby Bell Award winner given to the team's outstanding special teams player, and Maxx Williams was named Tight End / Fullback of the Year.
Isaac Fruechte earned his second Wide Receiver of the Year Award, while Tommy Olson and Zac Epping shared Offensive Linemen of the Year honors. On the opposite side of the ball, Cameron Botticelli took home the Defensive Lineman of the Year award.
Matt Leidner was named Offensive Work Team Player of the Year and Cody Poock was recognized as the Defensive Work Team Player of the Year.
Brandon Lingen received Outstanding Offensive Freshman of the Year laurels, while Steven Richardson was named Outstanding Defensive Freshman of the Year.