Quarterback Gardner Minshew II has been steadily seeping into the national consciousness with each win put up by the Washington State Cougars, and ESPN decided it was finally time to give him the proper treatment: A full three-minute segment on College Gameday.
It’s a fun story that touches on all the major points of Minshew’s rise to prominence as a Heisman Trophy candidate on the No. 8 team in the College Football Playoff — his humble journey to Pullman and how he won the job and won over his teammates with his personality after arriving in May.
“When you see the quarterback having fun, then you’re going to start having fun, and you’re going to joke around with him,” nickel back Hunter Dale says in the video. “His personality brings out the best in the team.”
It’s at this point that we’d be remiss if we didn’t interject this little gem of an exchange from Jayson Jenks’ fun feature on Minshew for The Athletic ($), which probably didn’t make it into the ESPN video because, wellllllll ...
Of course, about a third of the ESPN segment is dedicated to how Minshew’s best feature has taken on a life of its own:
“I think it’s just symbolic of how we are as a team — just free and loose, we’re gonna play as hard as we can and we’re gonna have fun doing it,” Minshew said.
It’s been a wild ride for Minshew.
“If I was planning it, you know, I’d have driven straight up to Pullman (after high school),” Minshew says. “It just wasn’t in the plan for me. I stopped in Troy (Alabama), Senatobia (Mississippi), Greenville (North Carolina). It all led me here, and I feel like everything that I’ve been through has really prepared me for the moment I’m in now.”
Speaking of that mustache, WSU’s Heisman Trophy campaign is going over well with voters.
Obligatory plug: You can still get one of these!