Clayton Thorson scored two touchdowns, Justin Jackson ran for 120 yards and the Northwestern defense turned in another dominant performance as the No. 16 Wildcats shut out Minnesota 27-0 on Saturday.
Thorson, a freshman quarterback, scored on runs of 5 and 1 yards to spark the offense for Northwestern (5-0, 1-0 Big Ten). The Wildcats defense, which has allowed only three touchdowns in five games, did the rest.
Northwestern defensive tackle Tyler Lancaster forced a fumble by Minnesota quarterback Mitch Leidner that linebacker Anthony Walker returned 13 yards for a touchdown that gave the Wildcats a 27-0 lead early in the fourth quarter.
Minnesota (3-2, 0-1) turned the ball over twice and finished with only 173 yards. The Golden Gophers also failed to convert on all three of its fourth down conversion attempts.