Fleck likes what QB Kaliakmanis brings to Gophers offense

P.J. Fleck press conference ahead of fall practices


The Gophers football team held their first practice of the fall camp on Monday and one of the biggest changes this year is at quarterback. While Athan Kaliakmanis did start five games last year, this is the first season he enters the season as their starting quarterback.

Head coach P.J. Fleck joked that the biggest difference between Kaliakmanis and former Gophers qb Tanner Morgan is their height but Kaliakmanis does bring other things to the table.

“There’s an X factor, and I think that’s what Athan brings,” Fleck said on Monday at his news conference. “He’s got a little of this moxie. This x factor that he can create. I think that’s the difference that we’ve had.”

Fleck is entering his seventh season in charge of the Gophers program.

“What I’m looking at is how we’re building the program where when guys leave, you already have somebody that’s developed in that role ready to go. Whether that’s through the transfer portal or whether that’s the high school development piece of that, but the familiarity with the systems, with the culture, I think that’s absolutely critical for people that are selecting the program,” Fleck added.

The Gophers will hold two open practices for fans to attend on Saturday, August 5 (7:00 p.m. at Huntington Bank Stadium) and Tuesday, August 15 (3:30 p.m. at Athletes Village). They open the season at home against Nebraska on Thursday, August 31.