Sat Oct 16 03:08pm EDT
Purdue 28, Minnesota 17. If rumors of their coach's impending demise Friday were supposed to light a fire under the Gophers today, it burned itself out sometime shortly after warmups. In the first half alone, Minnesota punted on five of six possessions and sent a snap sailing over the punter's head to set up a short Purdue touchdown on the sixth.
The football fates turned their back on Brewster, too, robbing the Gophers of a pair of apparent touchdowns in the third quarter with an illegal motion penalty and a fumble-turned-touchback at the end of an interception return. At no point was there any illusion that Brewster might win a temporary reprieve from the alleged death sentence.
So the watch begins. Per the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, we know Minnesota officials held "intensive discussions regarding [Brewster]'s future" this week, and pointedly refused to confirm or deny the talk radio report that a loss today would bring down the ax. We know Brewster wasn't fired on the field.
We don't know if word will come today, or Sunday, or Monday, or later this season. If the report was wrong, it was only in its prematurity: With six straight losses to his name – half of them coming against a I-AA/FCS paycheck, a token MAC-rifice and now a conference rival playing without its top quarterback, running back and wide receiver – in a make-or-break season, the final word on Brewster's fate is coming soon enough. Only divine intervention could carry him through the year, and scraping out a .500 record from a 1-6 start, with Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan State and Iowa still on the schedule, would be a miracle of the highest order.
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Matt Hinton is on Twitter: Follow him @DrSaturday.