MINNEAPOLIS The University of Minnesota football team's recruiting class last year consisted of two of the state's top prep quarterbacks. One saw the field and wound up as the starter for more than half the season. The other took a redshirt year, spending his days as the quarterback on the scout team.
The former, of course, is Philip Nelson, who started seven games for Minnesota in 2012 after MarQueis Gray and Max Shortell went down with injuries. The latter is Mitch Leidner, who enters 2013 as a redshirt freshman. While Nelson appears to once again be the Gophers' starter at least this spring Leidner has seen his repetitions in practice take a big jump from a year ago.
During spring practices, Minnesota has used a rotation of Nelson and Leidner with the team's top two offenses. The Gophers' passing attack is now in the hands of a sophomore and a redshirt freshman.
"I've noticed both Phil and Mitch, they've both become much more mature," said tight end Drew Goodger. "They're t...