It seems like ages ago since we last saw P.J. Fleck and his Minnesota squad on the field.

With more than 40 COVID-19 cases inside the football program, the Gophers’ season has been on hold for more than two weeks as they’ve seen two games cancelled. Minnesota has finally returned to practice and is hopeful to play this Saturday against Nebraska.

Fleck spoke with the media Monday, and on brand, he was optimistic. This time, he was hopeful about playing Saturday’s game.

That’s good and bad news all wrapped into one. It seems like the Gophers are on the other side of the COVID outbreak. However, Minnesota missing more than 20 players makes any game tough, especially going up against a Nebraska squad coming off a win and looking to build some confidence heading into 2021.

Though that number of absences is quite significant, Fleck is confident the team will meet conference protocols and be able to play Saturday.

As a reminder, all football players in the NCAA will not have this season counted against their eligibility. That leaves the door open for players to return who normally would be done after this season. It’s something supported by many, including Fleck.

With multiple cancellations and poor performances, it’s safe to say this has been a lost season for Fleck’s squad.