There was only one way for it to end for Minnesota Golden Gophers running back Mohamed Ibrahim and that was with his name attached to more records.

In Thursday's 28-20 Pinstripe Bowl victory over Syracuse, Ibrahim broke the record for single-season touchdowns in Minnesota history when he ran for his 20th of the season. It didn't stop there as Ibrahim broke David Cobb's single-season rushing yards record and Darrell Thompson's all-time rushing yards record which stood since 1989, before Ibrahim eclipsed it Thursday.

Ibrahim finishes with 4,597 rushing yards in his Gophers career and the cherry on top of it all was a Minnesota win in New York City.

Quarterback Tanner Morgan relieved an injured Athan Kaliakmanis in the second quarter and threw a couple of darts, including a pair of touchdowns.

The injury to Kaliakmanis was a tough blow for the Gophers, but Morgan getting one last crack at things in a Minnesota uniform and riding off into the sunset with a win tickled many supporting the maroon and gold.

On the other side of the coin, Minnesota's defense showed up as expected.

Syracuse was able to rack up a lot of yards on offense, 477 to be exact, but the Gophers won with a bend-but-don't-break mentality.

Minnesota had two sacks, six tackles for loss and even a 70-yard pick six from safety Coleman Bryson.

The win moved Minnesota head coach P.J. Fleck to 4-0 in bowl games since taking over the Gophers' program in 2017.

Here's what we learned in Thursday's win for Minnesota:


The stats won't jump off the page but Morgan really stabilized Minnesota's offense when Kaliakmanis left with injury. Morgan dropped a pass right in the bucket to wide receiver Daniel Jackson for a 20-yard touchdown on the same drive he replaced Kaliakmanis. Morgan hadn't taken a single snap in any game since Nov. 5 when the Gophers played Nebraska. He came in off the bench and delivered right away with a perfect pass to extend Minnesota's lead to 14-0. Morgan has been a mainstay in the program as a sixth-year senior with injuries limiting his opportunities in his final season. Once Morgan was cleared late in the year, Fleck stuck with Kaliakmanis. Morgan wasn't your typical backup quarterback coming into a game having plenty of experience as a four-year starter. That experience prevented Minnesota from panicking when Morgan entered the scene in the Pinstripe Bowl. It's not the circumstances anyone would want to see Morgan get a final curtain call, but it was still a sweet moment for the Gophers' longtime signal caller. For all the rightful praise Ibrahim received for his legendary Minnesota career, it's worth noting Morgan will exit first in win percentage all-time for Gophers quarterbacks and first in completion percentage.


Wide receiver Daniel Jackson had three touchdowns in the regular season. In the Pinstripe Bowl, he had two. Jackson had 33 receptions during the regular season but came on in the end with 15 receptions in Minnesota's final four games. The former four-star recruit started to prove his worth near the end of his junior season and his performance on Thursday should inspire a lot of hope that Jackson could develop into the No. 1 option in 2023 for the Gophers' passing game.


Pick any of Ibrahim's record-breaking moments. The 20th touchdown, the run to pass Cobb for most rushing yards in Minnesota single-season history or the run to pass Thompson for most rushing yards all-time in program history. Of the three, let's go with Ibrahim passing Thompson. Ibrahim busted his tail to get back for his sixth season after a gruesome Achilles injury in the 2021 opener against Ohio State. Ibrahim deserves credit for a ton, including opting to return to Minnesota when he had an opportunity to turn pro even after the season-ending injury in 2021. Ibrahim instead returned for one last ride this season and didn't disappoint. The Minnesota record books are now littered with Ibrahim's name and rightfully so.



For the first time this season Minnesota won a game in which they lost the time of possession battle. The Gophers are excellent at wearing down opponents with long, methodical drives that drain a defense. Against Syracuse, Minnesota was boosted with the pick six from Bryson and a 72-yard kick return in the third quarter from Quentin Redding which led to a swift two-play drive that resulted in another Minnesota touchdown. While both those outcomes were great, they happened quickly allowing Syracuse to gain the ball back in quick order. It was just the fourth time all year Minnesota lost the time of possession battle but this time it still resulted in a win.


"We couldn't have asked for a better week. One of the greatest bowl experiences I've ever had in my entire life, and I'm sure that the players would agree. ... Could have went either way. Just really glad it came out the way it did for us. Couldn't be more proud of our players. Couldn't be -- especially for our senior class. This senior class has, basically, three full seasons in a row won 11 games, 9 games, 9 games. That hasn't happened since 1900 through 1905. I don't think that gets enough credit." -- Minnesota head coach P.J. Fleck on the win and senior class

"I'll say one thing about this guy, he never blinked. He supported Athan all the way through it. And he has had to work through some things with his health and did a tremendous job doing that and supported Athan after he was cleared. A lot of irony that he came in to finish the game and do what he did. Couldn't be more proud of our time, like I said, and especially this guy right here." -- Fleck on quarterback Tanner Morgan

"It's not something that I circled. I just took it week by week, just doing my job, executing the game plan. And, you know, one game lead up to another, and it just adds up. You know, I talked to Darrell during winter practices leading up to this game. We're going to go out to dinner one of these days, so it's going to be fun just talking about our careers and stuff like that." -- Running back Mohamed Ibrahim on breaking Darrell Thompson's all-time rushing record

"You know, I think looking back I've had time to reflect over the past kind of month. The thing I just come back to is just gratefulness. I'm grateful for every teammate I've ever had. There's been a lot. Grateful for every coach. You know, especially when you think about it, I've known Coach for, like, eight years. I've known Coach Ciarrocca for eight years. Those guys have had an incredible impact on my life and kind of what is coming next." -- Quarterback Tanner Morgan on his Minnesota career

"I looked up at the screen actually because I couldn't believe it. What's crazy, though, is I got beat on that route three or four times during the season. And so to be able to get that and learn from it, learn from my mistakes I think is the biggest thing. It's something that they preach all the time, and so it was cool to be able to put that into effect for sure." -- Safety Coleman Bryson on his pick six

"You know, it goes back to watch him in high school, watching him, his desire to be the best, being able to overcome adversity. He has an incredibly poised mind, confident heart. He has a unique ability for a young person to make really educated decisions and not be -- just rush into something. He is incredibly intelligent, and he is one of the greatest football players I've ever been around. It's so fun because he is going to be a coach one day. At least that's what you told me. Now you just have to pick Coach Burns or me. That's going to be interesting. (Laughing.) I'll win that one, by the way, just so you know." -- Fleck on Ibrahim's Minnesota career


Minnesota will open its 2023 campaign on Aug. 31 at home against Nebraska. That's 244 days away for those keeping track at home. The Gophers' non-conference schedule features a trip to Chapel Hill to take on North Carolina and home contests against Eastern Michigan and Louisiana-Lafayette. In conference play, Minnesota will play both Michigan and Ohio State in the same season for the first time since 2015. Other conference games of note include the regulars like Iowa, Illinois and Purdue. It all starts in 244 days!

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