Minnesota senior safety Brock Vereen is from Valencia, Calif. He has fully bought into the Iowa-Minnesota football rivalry. This video, released by the Gophers' athletics department Wednesday night, certainly proves that:
Again, Vereen's remarks:
"The thing about Floyd is it's the one (trophy) that has the most emotion behind it. There's a true hatred for Iowa that you can come to understand when you play here. To carry that burden going forward, it's impossible not to be excited for the game versus Iowa."
I interviewed Vereen two months ago at the Big Ten media days in Chicago, asked him about the Gophers' 31-13 loss at Iowa last year and about opening this season's Big Ten schedule at home against the Hawkeyes.
“Iowa and Minnesota is gonna be a special game," Vereen said. "The fact it’s the Big Ten opener is even a bigger deal. From a Minnesota standpoint, we didn’t play like we wanted to play last year. So to get that pig back in TCF Bank would be a big deal.”
“The Big Ten is as competitive a conference as you can find, and to get to a hot start is gonna be huge.”
“There’s always gonna be some negative feelings toward Iowa. That’s if you win or lose. But there’s definitely a bitterness, there’s a feeling of revenge. Minnesota and Iowa is going to be a big deal, no matter what.”
“We were surprised at how poorly we played (at Iowa last year), more disappointed than anything. I can’t speak on their season. What they did do is they brought it when it was time to play Minnesota.”
Vereen, by the way, is on track to graduate with a degree in communications in 3 1/2 years, and with a 3.1 GPA. I'm not going to judge a guy on a 5-minute interview, but he seemed like a good egg, and Jerry Kill wouldn't have brought him to Chicago as one of his three player-representatives if he wasn't made of the right stuff.