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CHAMPAIGN, Ill. Jaromir Jagr Stars Jersey . -- On a windy Illinois afternoon that made passing an adventure, Minnesota knew it would need to run the ball if it wanted to pocket a win.But the Golden Gophers figured they might have to run a little farther than they did to beat the Illinois.A pair of early Illinois turnovers and a short punt gave Minnesota the ball at the Illinois 49-, 20- and 9-yard lines, and the Gophers turned each into a touchdown on the way to a 40-17 win.Rodney Smith did the bulk of the damage, rushing for 100 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries. Shannon Brooks added 59 yards and a score on a dozen carries.Smiths first touchdown was a 20-yard burst up the middle with 2:16 left in the first quarter, giving Minnesota (6-2, 3-2 Big Ten) the lead for good at 14-7. It followed a fumbled punt by Illinois Darius Mosely, recovered by Antione Winfield Jr. at the 20.We love to see that because were pretty good in the red zone, said Brooks, who added that those turnovers built momentum for Minnesota and robbed Illinois of energy. Yeah, definitely. Thats a stab, a stab in the back. That hurts.The turnovers, Illinois coach Lovie Smith said, swung the game hard and early for Minnesota.Its hard to win the football game when you start like that, Smith said. Those turnovers put us in a hole.Jeff George Jr., Illinois (2-6, 1-4) third-string quarterback and the son of Illini legend and longtime NFL quarterback Jeff George, started his second straight game and went 16-34 for 156 yards and a touchdown.Illinois starter Wes Lunt suited up but sat out his third straight game with a back injury. Second-string quarterback Chayce Crouch, who injured a shoulder in a win over Rutgers two weeks ago, is out for the season after having surgery Monday, Smith confirmed.Illinois receiver Malik Turner left the field on a stretcher in the first half after a hit by Minnesota safety Duke McGhee. Turner was taken to a local hospital but was back in the locker room before the end of the game, Smith said, though further information about his injury was not available.It was terrifying. It was emotional, especially with a kid like that who works so hard, to see a tragic injury like that, Smith said.McGhee was flagged for targeting and ejected from the game.THE TAKEAWAYMinnesota: The Gophers get what in the end turned into a blowout win, a little payback for a loss at Illinois two years ago and guarantee themselves bowl eligibility. But they struggled for three quarters to put away a limited Illini team. While some players acknowledged celebrating a bit, Minnesota coach Tracy Claeys downplayed the significance of being bowl eligible. He said his team still hopes to find a way to the Big Ten title game. And he said he never worried that Illinois was hanging around longer than hed like.I never really felt uncomfortable as long as we had a lead, Claeys said.Illinois: Even if Lunt had played theres no guarantee Illinois would be better off with him than George. Turner has been Illinois only real receiving threat this season. Illinois needs its defense, which Smith has called the strength of the team, to create the kind of turnovers that gave the Gophers short fields Saturday.INTO THE WINDMinnesota quarterback Mitch Leidner and his receivers struggled with the wind. The senior was 10-19 for 112 yards, and the 20 mph gusts didnt help, Claeys said.It was big. It hurt the passes toward the sidelines, the coach said,McGHEES HITClaeys said after the game that hits like the one that led to McGhees ejection are difficult to avoid.When those guys are going down that low, its hard, he said. I hate to tell them to go down to the legs all the time. Weve got to stay below the shoulders.THANKFULLikely no one was happier to be spending Saturday in Champaign than Minnesota linebackers coach Mike Sherels. He tweeted Friday, his 32nd birthday, that this one is special because I almost didnt make it. Sherels spent much of August being treated for what has only been described as a serious digestive problem that required multiple surgeries. He rejoined the team in early October.UP NEXTMinnesota: Minnesota has a good shot at win No. 7 next Saturday when it faces Purdue at home.Illinois: The Illini get a second straight home game, hosting a Michigan State team thats down but still considerably stronger that Illinois.---Follow David Mercer on Twitter: (at)davidmercerAPAssociated Press college football coverage: http://collegefootball.ap.org/ Patrick Sharp Stars Jersey . In the lead up - which seemed to begin the moment Mike Geiger blew the whistle in Houston last Thursday night - the Impact rumour mill went into overdrive. The speculation went into meltdown mode, of the golden nugget variety. Bobby Smith Jersey . Supported by three-run homers from Jayson Werth and Wilson Ramos, the young right-hander went seven strong innings in the Washington Nationals 8-4 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday night. http://www.authenticstarsnhlhockey.com/mattias-janmark-jersey/ . -- Brandon Jennings made the most of his first game with the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night. Diego Maradona has hit out at the Argentine Football Association after the nations early exit from the Olympic Games, telling Radio La Red, Argentina run the risk of missing the next two World Cups.Argentina exited the Olympic football tournament at the group stage on Wednesday after a 1-1 draw?with Honduras in Brasilia.The senior national team has come close to success in each of the past three years, reaching the finals of the 2014 World Cup, 2015 Copa America and this summers Copa America Centenario, but a crisis at the AFA -- as well as the prospect of Lionel Messi and other key stars retiring -- has left Maradona with serious concerns.The directors were in Miami sunbathing, and they dont care about Argentine football, said Maradona, who won the 1986 World Cup with Argentina.Honduras cant beat us. [It is] a country for which I have a lot of respect, but they play baseball. They dont know anything about football.Argentina, now coached by Edgardo Bauza after Gerardo Martinos resignation, are third in their 2018 World Cup qualification group.?The federation, led by Julio Grondona since the 1970s, has been in turmoil since the late FIFA senior vice president died in 2014.In June, FIFA stepped in and named a committee to run the federations daily affairs with a mandate that elections must be held by July 2017.Maradona claimmed that the current chaos within the Argentina federation was institutional and that Barcelona star Lionel Messi was right to call out the federation during the Copa America Centenario. Brian Bellows Stars Jersey. Lets get to work. What Messi was talking about has gone on forever, he said. How is it possible that the families of the coaching staff get better accommodations than the players?Maradona said he had his doubts about whether Argentina would be able to pull a team together in time for World Cup qualifying in September. Argentina face Uruguay on Sept. 1 and Venezuela five days later.I wish Paton [Bauza] the best of luck, but we are taking a risk with this, he said. It [qualifying] is going to be complicated.Finally, he blasted the new federation administration, saying that Argentina has passed from the leadership of Grondona, which he called the mafia of Grondona, to the current situation, which he called a mafia of Macri in reference to the countrys current president, Mauricio Macri. Macri was a former president at Boca Juniors.He said he would seek out current FIFA president Gianni Infantino to address what he sees as institutional problems.I dont like it, and I plan to do something about it, he said. Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Wholesale Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys China NFL Cheap Jerseys ' ' '