football-fbs flag

Jacob Myers | NCAA.com | September 22, 2018

Minnesota and Maryland wear helmet stickers to honor former Gophers player Nick Connelly who died this week

Minnesota football players honored former teammate Nick Connelly with helmet stickers at Saturday's game.

The Minnesota Golden Gophers took the field Saturday with heavy hearts following the death of former offensive lineman Nick Connelly on Wednesday. To symbolize their compassion for Connelly and his family, each member of the Gophers had a sticker put on their helmets with the initials “NC.”

Maryland, the Gophers' opponent this week, also added a sticker to its players’ helmets with Connelly’s number 74 in an outline of the state of Minnesota next to its “79” sticker for former Maryland player Jordan McNair, who died earlier this year.

Some members of the Gophers also wore wristbands in remembrance of Connelly.

Connelly started the first five games for coach P.J. Fleck and Minnesota in 2017 at right tackle before retiring due to concussions. Connelly was diagnosed with a rare form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma called Burkitt's lymphoma. His father, Chuck Connelly, said Thursday on Twitter that "heaven needed a right tackle and Nick Connelly got the call.”

Fleck said this week during a press conference that Nick would be in the team’s thoughts and prayers and each player had “humble hearts” moving forward.

“Any time you have cancer, it's one of those battles that none of us want a family member to have and go through personally,” Fleck said. “He's got incredible resolve, and he's a wonderful human being. I know he's got a lot of teammates praying for him and supporting him.”

Surprising quirks make these college stadiums stand out

Here are four venues that are unlike anywhere else in college sports, including the world's largest wooden dome and a cathedral-style skylight ceiling at Harvard's Lavietes Pavilion.
READ MORE

College volleyball rankings: Wisconsin jumps to No. 4 in NCAA.com's Power 10

In this weeks Power 10 college volleyball rankings, Baylor stays on top and Wisconsin jumps again to No. 4 after another top-10 win.
READ MORE

College volleyball: Wisconsin continues win streak, sweeps No. 6 Minnesota in another top-10 win

Wisconsin took down another top-10 team, this time beating No. 6 Minnesota for the first time since 2014.
READ MORE

Subscribe To Email Updates

Enter your information to receive emails about offers, promotions from NCAA.com and our partners