Gopher Football, Basketball Coaches to Headline Tuesday Event in Owatonna
New University of Minnesota football coach P.J. Fleck and men's basketball coach Richard Pitino are scheduled to appear in town Tuesday during the Gopher Road Trip.
Owatonna is a regular destination for the Gopher Road Trip. This year's event is at the Holiday Inn at 8AM. It is free and open to the public. Fans should go to www.GopherSports.com to register. There is no charge and breakfast is part of the program.
About 10 Gopher coaches will be along for the ride says U of M play-by-play man Mike Grimm, who spoke with KRFO radio last week. Director of Athletics Mark Coyle's first order of business after being named to his post one year ago was to board a bus for the road trip.
Grimm says Coyle's first year at the helm had a rough start with the dismissal of wrestling coach J. Robinson and calls for the replacement of Pitino. The coach comes to Owatonna this week after recently signing a contract extension after an amazing turnaround of a season and appearance in the NCAA tournament. Men's hockey coach Don Lucia is also set to appear in Owatonna. Mascot Goldy Gopher will also rise early for the morning stop.
Fleck has taken the state by storm with his unbridled enthusiasm. He takes over a football team that had a successful season on the field, but dealt with controversy off of it. Grimm says Fleck is as positive behind closed doors as he is in front of the public.
Grimm said a purpose of the road trip is to thank residents around the state that support the university throughout the school year. The road trip will visit 14 communities over a two-week span.