Alex Keith (9) celebrates with his defensive teammates during Minnesota's season opener (photo/

Alex Keith (9) celebrates with his defensive teammates during Minnesota’s season opener (photo/

Missouri Tiger fans know we have a couple of special defensive ends in senior Markus Golden and junior Shane Ray, but the Minnesota Golden Gophers have an end who is pretty good himself.  Had injuries not cut out a big portion of his schedule this year, he could have been one of the top defensive linemen in the Big Ten.

Alex Keith says ever since he was eight years old, until he just about finished up high school, he attended every Mizzou home game.  The Columbia Hickman grad took his talents up north for Jerry Kill’s Gophers and he exploded on the scene in his first start in the season opener against Eastern Illinois.

Keith made his first career start against Eastern Illinois and recorded four tackles, recovered two fumbles, forced one fumble and notched one sack before leaving the game with an injury.  He ended up playing in eight games with that one start.  Keith says he’s healthy now and wants nothing more than to beat the Tigers come Thursday.

Alex Keith on facing his hometown Tigers (:30 sound clip below)