Golden Gopher’s Irving Named B1G Freshman of the Week

Irving Named B1G Freshman of the Week

University of Minnesota running back Mar’Keise Irving was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week after his standout performance last Saturday at Northwestern.

The Chicago native returned to his home state of Illinois and rushed 19 times for a career-high 110 yards and two touchdowns to help lead Minnesota to a 41-14 road win. Irving scored on runs of three and 41 yards as Minnesota improved to 6-2 overall, 4-1 in the Big Ten and 3-0 on the road this season.

Irving has been forced into an active role because of injuries to the Minnesota backfield this season and the true freshman has delivered. He has now rushed 66 times for 355 yards and three touchdowns this season.

In his previous two games – a road win at Northwestern and a home win against Maryland – he has rushed 34 times for 215 yards and three touchdowns. Prior to those games, Irving had rushed 32 times for 140 yards through the first six games of the season.

Irving rushed for 105 yards against Maryland and 110 yards at Northwestern to become the first true freshman in Minnesota history to record consecutive 100-yard games in Big Ten play since Laurence Maroney in 2003. Maroney had three straight 100-yard games in 2003 against Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin.

Irving’s play helped Minnesota improve to 12-3 in its last 15 games away from home and helped lead the Gophers to consecutive wins at Northwestern since the Maroon and Gold were victorious in 1989 and 1993.

Irving is the second Gopher to be named a Big Ten Player of the Week this season, joining punter Mark Crawford who was named Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week on Oct. 4. He is the first Gopher to be named Big Ten Freshman of the Week since Rashod Bateman was honored on Nov. 5, 2018.

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