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A Quick Lane Bowl Preview, Featuring PJ Fleck and Paul Johnson

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Paul Johnson and PJ Fleck stopped by to help Off Tackle Empire preview the Yellow Jackets’ and Gophers’ showdown in Detroit.

Miami v Georgia Tech
RIP TO THE SMUGGEST FACE IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images

We at Off Tackle Empire (OK, me) were lucky enough to get a press pass to today’s Quick Lane Bowl, featuring the Minnesota Golden Gophers and Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Attached is a transcript of our interview with the coaches.

reporter.0.png Thank you both for being here, coaches. Congratulations on making the Motor City Little Caesar's Quick Lane Bowl.

fleck.0.png I AM ELITE, THANK YOU. ON BEHALF OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA I THANK YOU SO MUCH, MISTER REPORTER. WE ARE PREPARED TO ATTACK THE QUICK LANE BOWL WITH ENTHUSIASM UNFORESEEN IN BOWL GAME HISTORY. MY GOLDEN GOPHERS HAVE BEEN FIRING ON ALL CYLINDERS IN PRACTICE, SUCCEEDING ACADEMICALLY, ATHLETICALLY, SPIRITUALLY, AND SOCIALLY. ROW THE BOAT, SKI U MAH.

...that's the avatar you chose? You can't possibly think that highly of yourself.

reporter.0.png I...uh...I've done a lot of working out latel--that's not the point. Coach, what will your offense need to do to carry you to victory on Wednesday?

fleck.0.png Well what an excellent-looking question, reporter, and I thank you for asking it. You see, with Tanner Morgan and Zach Annexstad at the quarterback position, we have our offense in a position to run out of any formation imaginable; that's the attitude we've cultivated here at the University of Minnesota: That anything is possible, if you put your mind to it and use two quarterbacks interchangeably and forgettably for an entire season!!!With our read-option offense complimenting our power running game and the use of our talented crew of wide receivers--who, you know, have really put in the effort not only in practice but in the community this year, where our scholar-athletes have logged over 104482 cubits of community service time, where CUBIT means Community Unity Building In Tandem but has nothing to do with my predecessor at a prior employer, these Nektons have been out in their community as CUBITs making sure that they leave their worlds a little better than when they stepped into them.

johnson.0.png We will run the ball. You fucking moron.

reporter.0.png I... Uh, this will be Coach Johnson's last game. Coach Fleck, can you comment on what he has meant to the ranks of college football profession, and Coach Johnson, what advice would you give Coach Fleck?

fleck.0.png You talk about coaching legends in college football, and I step onto the field with coaching legends like Coach Johnson, or Urban Meyer, or Doug Martin, and I think, what a world in which we all have the chance here to be making a difference and teaching young scholar-athletes to be real leaders not only on the field, but in there community -- here you have a program like ours, please stay awake, Mister Reusse, which has overcome a great deal of adversity and Instagram posts and controversy and turned lemons into lemonade, whereby I mean that Life Encounters Many Obstacles Nary Any Downright Exhausting -- and when you have the opportunity to take the field with those greats of the game, those leaders of men and champions of coachi--

johnson.0.png --run the ball.

reporter.0.png ...I see. Well, coach, tell us what you'll have to do on defense to bring home the victory. Coach Fleck, I know that you'll be missing Blake Cashman from the linebacking corps. How do you plan to replace him?

fleck.0.png Mister Good-Looking Reporter, I do indeed plan to replace Blake, but first I think we need to acknowledge the great contributions Blake has made to this program while volunteering in the community, being a leader on the field and off the field, really the Righteously Ongoing Captain Kangaroo of this defense and never once doing anything to debase the Maroon and Gold, while I think has come a long way in preparing for the Georgia Tech attack, which Coach Johnson has worked so hard to curate as a leader of young men in the Georgia Tech model, to which I composed a paean of--

johnson.0.png --we plan to run the ball.

reporter.0.png Yes, Coach Johnson, I understand that, but your defense, particularly the rushing defense, has ranked in the bottom third of college football and been questionable in som--

johnson.0.png --name one, you weak-kneed bastard.

reporter.0.png I, uh...

johnson.0.png We will run the ball.

fleck.0.png I TOO SHARE COACH JOHNSON'S PASSION FOR THE RUN GAME! WE IN MINNEAPOLIS, THE JEWEL OF THE UPPER MISSISSIPPI, THE GLITTERING BASTION OF HYPRR ELITE FOOTBALLERS FROM EDEN PRAIRIE TO LAKEVILLE TO A SLIGHTLY NORTHERN SUBURB I SHOULD PRETEND TO CARE ABOUT, BELIEVE IN ESTABLISHING THE RUN. THAT, YOU SEE, STANDS FOR
EVERYONE
STANDING
TOGETHER
AGAINST
BALL-STOPPERS
LINING

johnson.0.png I can't retire from this fucking shit soon enough.

Poll

Who wins?

This poll is closed

  • 72%
    Minnesota
    (55 votes)
  • 27%
    Georgia Tech
    (21 votes)
76 votes total Vote Now

And as a free Holiday bonus, WSR has some thoughts!

WSR: So...yeah. This is a game that’s going to happen. The opportunity for defensive players who didn’t go pro or get suspended to have their knees exploded for a couple hours in Detroit the day after Christmas. A chance for a team that gave up over 300 yards rushing on thee occasions to try to redeem themselves again after firing former DC Robb Smith following the Illinois debacle, which then went out and smothered Purdue and beat the hell out of wisconsin. Trust me, dear reader, the atrocities have been running through my head. But there are reasons for hope. The way to beat a triple option team is to keep the ball out of their hands as much as possible until you’ve got a few score lead, and this team can do that. We can force turnovers, and we can score some points. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mo Ibrahim and Tyler Johnson put up some big numbers against a middling defense. The Gopher offense showed against wisconsin that we could take the air out of the ball and just walk down the field for 10 minutes, and if that were to happen today we could be in good shape to cap off the season with a win. But right now I’m pretty nervous because GT has more to play for, and while the run defense has been much improved towards the end of the year I can’t help but worry.